Baseball, Men's Sports, Sports

Dirtbags head coach Troy Buckley awarded contract extension

After a year of accolades for the Long Beach State baseball team and USA Baseball’s collegiate national team, Troy Buckley has agreed to a contract extension through 2022 as the Dirtbags’ head coach.

“I am very grateful and appreciative of this opportunity to continue to lead this historic program,” Buckley said in a Long Beach State Athletics department press release announcement on Monday. “Success on and off the field is a culmination of a lot of individuals and groups’ efforts. I would like to start off thanking President [Jane Close] Conoley, Athletics Director Andy Fee and our university community for their commitment and trust in me to continue leading this program.”

As the LBSU head coach, he led the team to a 42-20-1 season in 2017, which resulted in his first Big West Conference championship, an NCAA regional tournament win and the right to host an NCAA Super Regional tournament. The Dirtbags finished the campaign as a consensus Top 10 team and fell one game short of a trip to the College World Series.

Buckley was also named Big West coach of the year and saw eight of his Dirtbags selected in the 2017 MLB first year player draft in July. The impressive list of his accomplishments was met with a sign of respect and faith in his ability by Fee.

“We are thrilled to have Coach Buckley here at Long Beach State and are committed to his vision for Dirtbags Baseball,” Fee said in the press release. “Last season was a tremendous success for the program, the university, and the entire Long Beach community, and we look forward to what Coach Buckley and his staff can accomplish in the years ahead. We believe he is the right coach to carry on the great tradition of Long Beach State baseball and get the Dirtbags back to Omaha.”

The end of the 2017 season brought an opportunity for Buckley to add another notch in his belt. He was selected to be the pitching coach for USA Baseball’s collegiate national team earlier this year and spent almost a full month with some of the country’s best returning college players that resulted in series wins against Chinese-Taipei, Cuba and Japan.

“It’s a bucket list item from the standpoint of the people on that staff, the friendships and respect I have for the other coaches, coach [John] Savage being a close friend and a big mentor as well as coach [Dave] Snow,” Buckley told the Daily 49er earlier this year. “To represent your country and be around all those great players…there’s a lot of cool things that I’ve been fortunate enough to do and this is going to be right at the top of that list.”

Last season was the highlight of Buckley’s seven-year career as head coach of the Dirtbags. LBSU is 228-172-1 in the time he’s been head coach, and has seen 31 former players sign MLB contracts.

The new extension means Buckley will surpass Mike Weathers as the third longest tenured head coach in Dirtbags’ program history at nine seasons.

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