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MARSHALL, June 20, 2014--There will be a different look from the dugout for the East Texas Baptist University baseball team in 2014-15 as Lee Driggers has resigned as the head coach and assistant coach Jared Hood will step to take over the program. Driggers is leaving after two years as the head coach for NCAA Division II Union University in Jackson, Tenn.
The baseball program will not miss a beat as Hood has been Driggers’ assistant the past two seasons. Hood will continue to move the program forward that Driggers’ started when he came in 2012.
“I am extremely proud of the progress our players have made the past two years and I am confident the program is in good hands and will continue to grow and prosper in the coming years,” says Driggers. “I am thankful for the opportunity to work with tremendous young men, a great administration and caring colleagues. I look forward to my new challenge but will miss these great relationships.”
Driggers produced 35 wins in two seasons at ETBU and guided them to their first American Southwest Conference tournament appearance in eight years. He also had two players named to the ABCA All-West Region team and three players make the All-ASC first-team.
“Lee has done a great job of bringing in young talent and getting the foundation built for our baseball program,” says ETBU Director of Athletics Kent Reeves.
Hood, who is a Marshall, Texas, native, will now continue moving the program forward to become one of the best in the American Southwest Conference as he enters his first head coaching job. He has a strong coaching background that varies from summer ball to working with the Cleveland Indians as an associate scout.
“I am excited to have this opportunity and blessed to start my head coaching career here at ETBU where I have roots in East Texas,” quotes Hood. “This will be a great transition as the players already know the program and we won’t miss a beat moving forward. I want to thank Kent (Reeves) and ETBU for this opportunity along with my wife and staff for their support they have given me in my career here and I am looking forward to starting my head coaching career in a town that means a lot to me.”
At ETBU, Hood has been the hitting coach the past two seasons and helped coach several players to become some of the best in the ASC. Phillip Windham, Tyler Bates, and Jeremy Pinder were all named to the All-ASC first-team as Windham and Bates were voted to an ABCA All-West region team. Windham was also named a pre-season D3baseball.com All-American and the past two years was in the top 20 for home runs in NCAA Division III.
“We are excited to have Jared (Hood) stepping in as our new head baseball coach at ETBU,” says Reeves. “He has a tremendous knowledge of the game of baseball and we look forward to him continuing to build this program.”
He received his first chance to coach collegiately at Hill College as an assistant for two years. In those two years, he recruited three players who were major league draftees and coached in a program that produced five major league draft picks.
Coaching in the summer leagues, Hood made stops as an assistant coach for the Cooperstown Hawkeyes of the New York Collegiate Baseball League (Cooperstown, NY) and the Dallas Patriots 18U select squad. Last year, he was an associate scout for the Cleveland Indians.
As a player in college, Hood started his playing career at Hill College before transferring to UT-Tyler to finish. After two years with Hill College, he had a very productive two years for the Patriots at Texas-Tyler hitting .367 with 20 home runs and 99 RBI. In his senior season (2009), he batted .345 with 13 home runs and 49 RBI. The first season was also a strong one with 50 RBI with seven home runs while hitting .390. Overall, he played in 95 games and was the captain of the 2009 ASC Championship team.
Hood graduated from Texas-Tyler in 2010 with a bachelor’s degree in Health & Kinesiology and has been married to his wife, Madison, for two years. They have one daughter, Avynn, who is one-year old.
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