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Reports: LSU Legend Paul Mainieri to Take Head Coaching Job At South Carolina

 Leif Skodnick  |    Jun 11th, 2024 4:06pm EDT

Louisiana State University head coach Paul Mainieri looks on as the Tigers prepare to take on the University of Florida during the Division I Men’s Baseball Championship held at TD Ameritrade Park on June 26, 2017 in Omaha, Nebraska. Mainieri is reported to be the next head coach at South Carolina. (Photo by Justin Tafoya/NCAA Photos via Getty Images)

Paul Mainieri, who coached Louisiana State University to the 2009 College World Series title, is expected to take the head coaching position at the University of South Carolina, according to multiple press reports.

Late Monday, Kendall Rogers of D1Baseball.com reported that Mainieri had a deal in place to become the next head coach of the Gamecocks, who, like LSU, play in the Southeastern Conference. South Carolina has yet to confirm that Mainieri is their choice.

The Baton Rouge Advocate reported on Tuesday that Mainieri called current LSU head coach Jay Johnson to tell him he was returning to coaching

“He called me yesterday and I just congratulated him,” Johnson told The Advocate on Tuesday. “He’s earned the right in this time in his life to choose what he wants to do. He’s a great coach, Hall of Fame coach. And (he’s) been very good to me in my time here.”

Terry Rooney, who served as pitching coach under Mainieri in Baton Rouge from 2007 to 2008, is expected to join his former boss in Columbia, according to the Advocate. Rooney, who returned to the Tigers program last year, is currently the associate director of program development and recruiting, and also served as Mainieri’s pitching coach for three seasons at Notre Dame.

South Carolina won the College World Series in 2010 and 2011 and made the finals in 2012, but has not been back to Omaha since. The Gamecocks have appeared in four Super Regionals and made seven NCAA tournament appearances since their last national championship.

Mainieri will be replacing Mark Kingston, who was fired on June 3 after seven years at the helm of the Gamecocks’ program. Kingston’s best season came in 2023, when South Carolina went 42-21 and advanced to the Gainesville Super Regional, which was won by the host Florida Gators in two games. He had a 217-155 record in Columbia.

At LSU, Mainieri compiled a record of 641-283-3, winning a national championship in 2009, six SEC tournament titles, and making five appearances at the College World Series in 15 seasons. He previously served as head coach at St. Thomas (Fla.) from 1983-88, Air Force from 1989-94, and Notre Dame from 1995-2006. He has a career record of 1,505-775-8.

 

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Leif Skodnick