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Univ. of Oregon to hire CSF's Horton to start baseball program ...

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by Claws for Concern, Sep 2, 2007.

  1. Claws for Concern

    Claws for Concern Active Member

    The University of Oregon will hire Cal State Fullerton baseball coach George Horton to restart its own varsity program, The Oregonian reported.
    Oregon has not had a varsity baseball team in 26 years and is the only Pac-10 school without one. Oregon, which has been trying to make a high-profile hire for weeks, announced his hiring at a news conference on Sept. 1.

    Oregon recently announced it would revive baseball, drop wrestling and add competitive cheer.

    Horton, 53, has taken his team to the College World Series six times. His team won in 2004, and he twice has been named national coach of the year.

    Horton has strong California recruiting ties. Coach Pat Casey of two-time defending national champion Oregon State has had a virtual lock on in-state talent. Oregon plans to begin play with limited scholarships in 2009.

    Edit update: After checking out CSF's site, they said Horton becomes college baseball's highest paid head coach. Also, Jason Gill, an assistant to Horton at CSF, is joining him in Oregon.
  2. Claws for Concern

    Claws for Concern Active Member

    Paging Birdscribe ...
  3. mike311gd

    mike311gd Active Member

    Baseball AND competitive cheer? Boy is this school on the rise.

    Great hire, though. It'll still be a while until they're competing with Oregon State. But Horton certainly won't deter anything.
  4. Claws for Concern

    Claws for Concern Active Member

    I was going to say something about the competitive cheer item. Is this what Title IX is all about?
  5. Kaylee

    Kaylee Member

    Oregon has been dead serious about legitimizing its baseball program, and in a hurry.

    The Ducks first courted Vandy's Tim Corbin, probably the hottest coach in the college game today. Then they looked toward UC-Irvine's Dave Serrano, who had just led the Anteaters to Omaha.

    Horton's credentials speak for themselves. He won't be able to beat OSU for in-state talent, but California is big enough for everybody.

    Now we just need to hope the baseball uniforms aren't designed by the football team.
  6. Birdscribe

    Birdscribe Active Member

    Apologies to Ray Milland, but this lost weekend just keeps on getting better. First, I'm stuck watching NASCAR. ::)

    Now this.

    I'll say this. George Horton turned down some very, very good jobs before taking this one, which -- frankly -- he should take.

    The chance to build a program that will soon be one of the Pac-10s elite in a city like Eugene is too good to pass up. Especially if Oregon is paying him as much coin as it is, which goes a lot further than what Fullerton is paying him to live in the money pit that is Orange County.

    And Kaylee, don't be too sure he won't be able to garner his share of in-state talent. It may take a couple, three years, but he'll compete... and then some.

    Combine that with his California network and the Ducks are going to be trouble in a few years.

    Now... on to more important matters. Who is Fullerton going to pilfer? Serrano would be the obvious choice, but I'm not sure he wants to leave what he's built at Irvine.
  7. Kaylee

    Kaylee Member

    Via Baseball America: Cal State Fullerton has yet to announce Horton's replacement, but UC Irvine coach Dave Serrano--who was national Assistant Coach of the Year in 2004 while at Fullerton--told BA's Aaron Fitt he was not going to return to Fullerton to replace Horton. Fullerton AD Brian Quinn was expected to begin the search process after the Labor Day weekend.

    It'll be interesting to see what transpires in Fullerton. There have been some high-profile coaching moves (Tennessee, Florida), so there would surely be some names out there.

    Worth noting is that when Fullerton won its last national title in 2004, baseball on the west coast was on an uncharacteristic downswing. USC was losing steam, as was UCLA. Serrano had yet to head to Irvine, and Pat Casey was only starting to get OSU on track. Stanford has been falling on hard times as well.

    Things have since gotten far more competitive out west, and while the SEC and Big 12 remain the top conferences, the gap is closing for conferences like the Pac 10.

    One thing in Oregon's favor: Phil Knight's pockets. I'm guessing the Ducks will have a stadium that will rival the likes of Arkansas, North Carolina and even LSU's new digs. OSU continues to play in one of the nation's oldest ballparks. The quality of playing facilities may be a bigger recruiting point in college baseball than any other sport.
  8. Claws for Concern

    Claws for Concern Active Member

    CSF is a big boy job without the money to back it up. Guess I'd better send an alumni check in care of the baseball program to help out, eh?
  9. Birdscribe

    Birdscribe Active Member

    Bingo. Probably not a bad idea. ;D

    Fullerton's been lucky, incredibly lucky, with the coaches it had and could keep -- largely because of Augie Garrido's large shadow and legacy and the fertile SoCal baseball pipeline.

    Plus, except for a couple of impacted majors (business, communications), our glorious alma-mater doesn't exactly have the strictest admission requirements. So it could get in a lot of the JUCO studs from all the baseball factories around SoCal to fill gaps.

    Thanks for the BA update, Kaylee. Here's a possible name for the pipeline... former Cal State Northridge coach and ex-CSF pitching coach Bill Kernen. Once again, however, he just took over the fledgling Cal State Bakersfield program, so... perhaps not.
  10. SoCalDude

    SoCalDude Active Member

    When Serrano was checking out Oregon, the less than full complement of scholarships was a key factor in him not jumping. Since then, word is Oregon will have the allowable number of scholarships -- is it something like 11.7??? Phil Knight just dumped another $100 million on the program. I'm sure the stadium will be awesome.
    As for Fullerton, Vanderhook is the probable. We was promoted to associate head coach last season. Tim Wallach has been mentioned but there is a question about whether he has a degree, which is a requirement. Andy Lopez, who at Arizona, could be in the mix. Lopez won a national championship at Pepperdine, then parlayed that to big bucks at Florida but couldn't win enough there and landed at Arizona, where he has done a good job.
    Finally, AP did not do a story on this hiring out of Eugene and this was a pretty big deal there. They rushed to get it done in time to have the news conference Saturday morning and be able to introduce Horton at the football game in the afternoon.
  11. Kaylee

    Kaylee Member

    Lopez leaving Arizona would be a huge mistake.
  12. Birdscribe

    Birdscribe Active Member

    Jesus, must be the heat, but how could I forget about Vanderhook? He's an alum and a longtime fixture in the program. Plus, he'll work cheap, an integral factor in Titanland.

    I'll admit Wallach's name came to mind a few years ago, when Horton's name came up for the LSU job. Interesting about the degree factor; I didn't know that.

    And after a record year of profits, Nike stock split 2-for-1 several months ago, so Phil Knight has more petty cash in which to play with. Horton couldn't have found a better situation, much as it pains me to say this.
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