On this episode of the College Baseball Central Podcast, Joe Healy talks Tennessee Volunteers baseball with David Cobb of the Chattanooga Times Free Press.
Dave Serrano took over the Tennessee program prior to the 2012 season, and expectations were understandably high, given that he had taken both UC-Irvine and Cal State Fullerton to the College World Series as a head coach. But for one reason or another, things just never clicked for Serrano in Knoxville and he stepped down after the 2017 season.
Now, former Missouri and Arkansas assistant coach Tony Vitello is at the helm. Long considered one of the hottest names in college baseball coaching circles, Vitello’s first crack as a head coach won’t be easy ride. By this point, the Volunteers haven’t been to a regional since 2005, when the recruits who are new to campus this fall were finishing kindergarten. That’s a long drought for a program that spent much of the 1990s as perhaps the class of the entire conference under head coach Rod Delmonico.
Among the topics discussed on this episode are:
- Why things didn’t work out for Serrano at Tennessee
- The local reaction to the hiring of Vitello
- Vitello’s vision for the program
- The current talent level on the roster
- Expectations for 2018
- Position battles to watch in fall practice
- What it will take for Tennessee to be competitive at the top of the SEC once again