WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Purdue baseball coach Greg Goff completed his coaching staff by announcing the hiring of Terry Rooney on Thursday. Rooney is a former head coach at UCF and boasts more than 25 years of college coaching experience.
Rooney coached LSU in the College World Series and has helped lead 10 teams to NCAA Regional bids. He was the 2014 American Athletic Conference Coach of the Year at UCF, and he most recently served as the associate head coach at Houston since 2017.
Goff and Rooney worked together at Alabama during the 2016-17 school year when Rooney served as Goff’s associate head coach and pitching coach.
“Terry is a great hire for our program, a true asset,” Goff said. “He’s been part of so many high-level winners, building Regional teams as both a head coach and an assistant. I am so thrilled he will join us at Purdue and lead the way in our recruiting efforts as we continue building for sustained success. I’m excited about the impact Coach Rooney can have on the program going forward and it feels good to team up with him again.”
Rooney led UCF 261 victories in eight seasons as the program's head coach between 2009 and 2016, including a 45-win season in 2012. After the Knights moved to the AAC for the 2013-14 school year, the team earned 36 wins and was 17-7 in league play. As a result, Rooney was named Coach of the Year.
UCF qualified for consecutive Regionals in 2011 and 2012 for just the second time in program history under Rooney. UCF’s No. 6 national ranking in 2015 was its highest in program history. His 2010 recruiting class was ranked as high as fourth nationally by Collegiate Baseball, which was another program best.
As the pitching coach and recruiting coordinator at Houston, Aaron Fletcher earned 2018 AAC Pitcher of the Year honors and Devon Roedahl was named the 2019 AAC Newcomer Pitcher of the Year.
The team also won the AAC title in 2018. The following year, Houston led the league with a 3.82 ERA and .238 opponent batting average. Rooney also helped put together the No. 1 class of junior college recruits. The Boilermakers played the Cougars twice at the 2018 NCAA Chapel Hill Regional, with Fletcher pitching a four-hit complete game.
Rooney’s teams also matched up against Purdue while he was the pitching coach at Notre Dame from 2004 to 2006. He helped the Fighting Irish win five Big East Conference titles, including three straight tournament crowns. When LSU hired Paul Mainieri in 2006, he brought Rooney with him to Baton Rouge.
In his second year with the Tigers, the team posted a 20-win improvement, won a pair of Southeastern Conference titles and went to the College World Series. Rooney was promoted to associate head coach the following season and helped assemble to No. 1 recruiting class in the nation, which featured future MLB All-Star and batting champion DJ LaMahieu. After Rooney left to become the head coach at UCF, LSU won the 2009 College World Series.
Throughout Rooney’s career, he has mentored 14 pitchers that went on to reach the MLB. He’s also coached 20 pitchers that were selected in the first 10 rounds of the MLB Draft, most recently Houston’s Robert Gasser, who was a second-round pick this year. As an assistant at Old Dominion during the 2000 and 2001 seasons, he recruited and signed future American League MVP and Cy Young Award winner Justin Verlander.
Rooney has also served as an assistant coach at Stetson between 2002 and 2003, James Madison between 1998 and 1999 and George Washington in 1997. He helped both Stetson and Old Dominion qualify for NCAA Regionals while his teams qualified for seven Regionals in nine seasons between 2000 and 2008.
Rooney was a pitcher at Radford and appeared in 79 games over three seasons, which ranks top five in program history. He earned his bachelor’s degree in social science in 1996. Rooney and his wife, Shaun, are the parents of a daughter, Milly Margaret.
“Our family is extremely excited and thankful to be joining Purdue University,” Rooney said. “I am looking forward to recruiting and coaching a special group of players in our quest for a Big Ten championship.”
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