AWARD: Porche named National Coach of the Year

Tuesday, July 3, 2018
by Wes Bloomquist | wbloomquist@uttyler.edu

TYLER – UT Tyler baseball coach Brent Porche has been named the ABCA/Diamond NCAA Division III National Coach of the Year after leading the Patriots to the NCAA DIII National Championship. Porche is the first coach to earn the award in program history and is joined by Pat Casey (Oregon State, DI), Tim Huber (Augustana, DII), Adrian Dinkel (Southeastern, NAIA), Jeff Johnson (Chipola, NJCAA DI), Jeff Willis (LSU Eunice, NJCAA DII) and Bill Fratto (Oakton, NJCAA DIII) as collegiate coaches of the year by the coaching association.

“Anytime a coach wins a National Coach of the Year Award it is a major accomplishment and everyone associated with the program and the institution can feel proud,” UT Tyler Athletics Director Dr. Howard Patterson said. “Brent, the coaching staff, and all of the team members performed with class and character for the entire 2018 season. All of the hard work paid off at the right time and we celebrate this National Championship and Coach of the Year recognition along with all UT Tyler Patriot players and fans from day one.”

Porche, who was named the ABCA/Diamond NCAA Division III West Region Coach of the Year on Monday, led the team to a 40-18 record that was capped in Appleton, Wisconsin with the program’s first national championship. UT Tyler went 11-2 in its NCAA postseason run that included winning the NCAA Central Regional in Sauget, Illinois where they won five straight elimination games and ended with a sweep of Texas Lutheran in the NCAA Championship finals. Going into the postseason unranked, Porche and the Patriots topped seven ranked opponents including No. 1 Wisconsin-Whitewater, No. 5 Randolph-Macon and No. 6 TLU en route to the national title.

“Great players who buy in and work hard make awards like Coach of the Year happen,” Porche said. “I’m extremely honored with so many great coaches out there in the best region in the country to be named the West Region Coach of the Year.  This award may have my name on it, but it takes an entire family effort for things like this to happen.  What an amazing year 2018 has been for the Patriots and I’m looking forward to many years being a part of this great place and this Patriot Family.” 

Porche owns a 226-110 career record as a head coach, including going 147-83 at LSU Alexandria before coming to Tyler last season. He would lead UT Tyler to a 39-9 record in his first season before guiding the Patriots to their first-ever 40-win season in program history in 2018. Porche is the first coach in UT Tyler baseball history to earn regional coach of the year honors.

Porche owns a 226-110 career record as a head coach, including going 147-83 at LSU Alexandria before coming to Tyler last season. He would lead UT Tyler to a 39-9 record in his first season before guiding the Patriots to their first-ever 40-win season in program history in 2018. Porche is the first coach in UT Tyler baseball history to earn regional coach of the year honors.

The Coaches of the Year will be honored on Friday, Jan. 4 on the main stage of the clinic hall prior to the start of clinics at the 75th annual ABCA Convention, which will be held Jan. 3-6, 2019 in Dallas.

“There are so many to thank that made this possible,” Porche said. “Thank the good Lord for putting me a this position to have an effect on the lives of these young men, thank my wife and kids for being so bought into what we are doing here and allowing me to do the things we need to do to make this program a success, thank my parents, grandparents aunts and uncles for the endless support and encouragement they provided over the years to help me get to this point in my career, thank you to Coach Grafton and the rest of our coaching staff for all the countless hours of recruiting, practices, weights, and all the work they put in behind the scenes, thank you to Dr. Patterson for giving me the opportunity to lead this program, thank you to all the staff, Andrew Cage and the Sports Medicine staff, Wes Bloomquist our Sports Information Coordinator, all of the game day staff, and everyone else at the University that make this possible, thank you to the alumni and former coaches for laying the foundation for this program.”

The ABCA, founded in 1945, is the primary professional organization for baseball coaches at the amateur level. Its nearly 10,000 members represent all 50 states and 23 countries. Since its initial meeting of 27 college baseball coaches in June 1945, the association’s annual awards program has grown to include nine divisions: NCAA Division I, II and III, NAIA, NJCAA Division I, II, III, Pacific Association Division and High School.

2018 ABCA/Diamond National Coaches of the Year
NCAA Div. I: Pat Casey, Oregon State
NCAA Div. II: Tim Huber, Augustana (SD)
NCAA Div. III: Brent Porche, Texas-Tyler
NAIA: Adrian Dinkel, Southeastern (FL)
NJCAA Div. I: Jeff Johnson, Chipola (FL)
NJCAA Div. II: Jeff Willis, LSU Eunice
NJCAA Div. III: Bill Fratto, Oakton (IL)
Pacific Assoc. Division: Reed Peters, San Joaquin Delta (CA)
High School Div. I: Paul Twenge, Minnetonka (MN)
High School Div. II: Kyle Slayton, Nashville (AR)
High School Div. III: Steve Bushnell, Topeka Seaman (KS)