Greg Goff says he is excited to begin dream job as new Alabama baseball coach (via Crimson Magazine)

By Stan J. Griffin: June 18, 2016

Photo by Stan J. Griffin

Calling it his "dream job," Greg Goff was introduced as the 31st coach of the University of Alabama baseball program on Friday.
At a .525 Club room at Sewell-Thomas Stadium packed with family members, various UA boosters and officials and fellow Crimson Tide coaches Patrick Murphy, Kristy Curry and Avery Johnson among others, Goff officially replaced the departed Mitch Gaspard as the new UA coach after spending the last two seasons at Louisiana Tech University.
“I am thankful to Athletics Director Bill Battle and The University of Alabama for the opportunity to be the head coach of the Crimson Tide,” said an emotional Goff, a native of Jackson, Tenn. “This is a great University and a great baseball program in the nation’s top baseball conference, and I am truly blessed to be here today. I have continued to work hard my entire career so that I could one day coach at one of the nation’s elite programs, and I could not be happier than to be a part of such a storied program."
Before introducing Goff, UA Athletics Director Bill Battle called it a "great day in Alabama baseball history," and noted that during the search to replace Gaspard, he was looking for a candidate that understood the Southeastern Conference and had experience in it, someone who had a passion to coach the tradition-rich Crimson Tide program and also "someone who had a drive to go to Omaha (for the College World Series)."
"Our new coach has head coaching experience at every level, and everywhere he's been he has won," he said.
Upon being introduced, Goff proclaimed that "God is good," and said that it was an unbelievable day for he and his family.
"I am so blessed to be able to be a part of this family and tradition here at the University of Alabama," he said.  "Today culminates a lot of moving, a lot of tears, a lot of relationships, a lot of goodness in people, and it's an honor for me to be a part of this, and to be standing in front of you today. When Coach Battle called and we talked about the Alabama job, I thought I was dreaming. I wouldn't have left Ruston, Louisiana if it wasn't my dream job."
He also took time during his remarks to praise the efforts of his Tide predecessor in Gaspard.
"I want to thank Coach Gaspard and what he's done for this program, and his dedication  and hard work and what he's done for this program, I have the utmost respect for," said Goff. "He's leaving this program in really good shape, and I'm coming into a great place. I feel great about the players that have been here, that are here, and the facilities, I know how hard he worked to make this commitment to this University, and I'm forever indebted to Coach Gaspard and what he's done with that."


He said his immediate goal upon taking over the Crimson Tide baseball job is recruiting.
"My number one goal is to win this state," said Goff. "The University of Alabama is a tremendous opportunity for kids in this state, and if kids haven't heard from Greg Goff in the next 24 to 48 hours, they will. We're going to recruit this state, and we're going to own this state, and we're not going to lose in this state.  I know when we were playing in Starkville a few weeks ago, there were some roster spots from Alabama and that can't happen and we've got to keep these guys in the state of Alabama. We've got to grow and continue to build those relationships. It's great high school baseball here in the state of Alabama and great coaches and great summer league programs. That makes my job so much easier whenever I can be fed great players."
He said he was immediately impressed with the Crimson Tide's home stadium.
"The biggest thing when I came to campus was to walk into this facility, this is amazing," said Goff. "Coach Battle, thank you, and thank Coach Gaspard and all you guys that have made this one of the best facilities in the country. I was overwhelmed to see the investment and the commitment that's here. You bring a young man into this facility, he won't leave here uncommitted and I can tell you that. It's an awesome opportunity, and the chance to play in the SEC and to play for championships are vital to what we're doing. Really, really excited about that."
Goff led an incredible resurgence in Ruston in only two seasons at the helm of the Louisiana Tech program. Inheriting a team that won only 15 games in 2014, Goff’s Bulldogs improved to 25-27 in 2015 before a breakthrough 42-20 record in 2016, which included an at-large berth in the NCAA Tournament’s Starkville Regional.
It was the Bulldogs’ first NCAA Regional appearance in 29 years, dating back to 1987.
Battle, who said he interviewed three candidates in person and at least five more by phone, said there were several things that impressed him about Goff.
"(It was the coach's) energy and passion, and the first two things (that Battle prioritized) was character, and will he try to accomplish our mission, and our mission is recruit and develop student-athletes to compete at the highest level in every sport, and to educate and prepare those student-athletes to compete in the highest levels of life after graduation, and to do both with honor and integrity," he said. "I believe that was his philosophy as well. I wanted someone who was strong in managing the game, and I was very impressed by how much he knew about our players, and about our recruits. And what he did at the levels that he's done it, was impressive to me."
He played his college ball at Jackson State Community College, where he earned his associate’s degree in 1991. He then spent time on the mound at Delta State, where he eventually earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in 1994 and 1996, respectively. Goff is married to the former Tina Newbill of Jackson, Tenn., and Friday marked the couple's 21st wedding anniversary.
The couple has four daughters: Kara, Kiley, Kolby and Kenzie.

GOFF’S HEAD COACHING CAREER

2004     Montevallo        26-27 (.491)
2005     Montevallo        36-22 (.621)
2006     Montevallo        43-18 (.705)
2007     Montevallo        47-17 (.734)
2008     Campbell           21-37 (.362)
2009     Campbell           27-24 (.529)
2010     Campbell           28-27 (.509)
2011     Campbell           17-37 (.315)
2012     Campbell           41-18 (.695)
2013     Campbell           49-10 (.831)
2014     Campbell           41-21 (.661)
2015     La. Tech           25-27 (.481)
2016     La. Tech           42-20 (.677)

Special thanks: Alabama Athletics Communications

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Stan J Griffin

I am a native of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, where I currently reside and work. I am doing regular sports and feature writing for the Tuscaloosa-based Druid City Living and also am the Alabama beat writer for Crimson Magazine. I am a 1993 graduate of the University of Alabama, where I wrote for The Crimson White. I have an extensive background in newspaper journalism, having served as a sports editor and reporter for the Delta Democrat Times, St. Clair News-Aegis, Andalusia Star-News and the St. Clair County News.

I also have my own sports blog site, The Sports Connection, which I partner on with a friend of mine, and we began this site in November of 2012. I write blog on a variety of sports subject, and have also had guest contributors write their own blogs for the site. I have interviewed prominent sports figures for the site, including Paul Finebaum of the new SEC Network.

Website: www.linkedin.com/in/stan-griffin-10506923

Druid City Living (DCL) is Tuscaloosa, Alabama's premier community newspaper, covering the great people, places and activities of the area.

 

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