CHARLESTON, S.C. –Charleston Southern baseball assistant coach and recruiting coordinator George Schaefer has been elevated to associate head coach, as announced by head coach Adam Ward Thursday afternoon.
Schaefer, who spent the previous two seasons as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator, earned the promotion after strengthening the pitching staff and placing it among the NCAA leaders in multiple categories.
"We're all very fortunate to have George Schaefer on our coaching staff. He does a tremendous job developing our pitchers and he is a relentless recruiter," said third-year head coach Adam Ward. "His tireless devotion to our recruiting efforts and his unique ability to forge relationships has already paid dividends with a very talented group of freshmen and junior college transfers that is currently on campus. I have a lot of confidence that we will recruit at a high level and develop pitchers because of his talents and hard work."
In Schaefer's first season with staff, the Bucs finished in the top-30 of the NCAA in three statistical categories including strikeout-to-walk ratio (7th, 3.08), strikeouts per nine innings (13th, 9.3) and walks per nine innings (28th, 3.04). The Bucs led the Big South in each of those categories and had a streak of six-straight games with double-digit strikeouts.
Charleston Southern also had individuals place among the top-75 in the nation in seven different categories including saves, stolen bases, stolen bases per game, strikeout-to-walk ratio, strikeouts per nine innings, toughest to strikeout and walks allowed per nine innings.
"When presented with the opportunity to return to my alma mater as a member of the coaching staff in 2016, I didn't think twice," Schaefer said. "Three years in the northeast – at two different Division I programs – led me back to Charleston to help the program I love win a Big South Conference Championship. I'm incredibly grateful to Coach Ward for the confidence he's shown in me and the vision we share for this baseball program. We'll continue to work tirelessly to develop our players, on and off the field, and recruit elite student-athletes from across the country."
The 2018 season saw strong pitching as the Bucs finished 10th in the NCAA in strikeout-to-walk ratio and 21st in walks per nine innings (3.08) also good for tops in the Big South Conference. Headlining the staff was senior closer Cody Smith who was selected in the 39th Round of the 2018 MLB Draft by the Pittsburgh Pirates. Senior right-hander Evan Nations capped off the season 31st in the NCAA in walks allowed per nine innings with a 1.48 mark.
Before returning to his alma mater, Schaefer spent two seasons as the pitching coach and recruiting coordinator at Iona College and one season as the director of baseball operations at Lehigh University.
A 2013 graduate of Charleston Southern, Schaefer was a co-captain his senior season, was a four-time Big South Academic Honor Roll member, President of the Student-Athlete Advisory Council (SAAC) and graduated with a double major in political science and communications.