Published: July 16, 2013
After leading The University of Tampa to the 2013 NCAA Division II baseball national championship in Cary, NC, head coach Joe Urso has been named the National Coach of the Year by the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) and Diamond Sports Company.
This marks the third time that Urso has earned the award, as he was also the recipient following the national championship seasons of 2006 and 2007. In all, Urso has led Tampa to three of the program's six national championships.
Urso becomes the third coach in program history to receive the top honor, which was also presented to Lelo Prado in 1992 and 1993 and Terry Rupp in 1998.
UT's all-time winningest baseball coach, the 1992 alum boasts a 567-176-1 all-time record at the helm of the Spartans. His .770 winning percentage is also tops in Spartan history. In 13 seasons, Urso has led the Spartans to nine Sunshine State Conference championships, seven NCAA South Regional crowns along with the three national titles.
In 2013, Tampa finished the season with a 47-12 overall record and defeated Minnesota State by a score of 8-2 to capture the national title. UT also won the SSC with a 19-5 record as Urso and his staff coached a pair of All-Americans, including the SSC and South Region Pitcher of the Year in Mike Adams.
Following the season, Urso continued to gain recognition for his players as a total of five Spartans were selected in the 2013 Major League Baseball Draft. A sixth player was also signed to a free agent deal. Since 2006, Tampa has produced 41 draft picks.
Urso will be recognized at the ABCA National Convention in Dallas, TX, which is scheduled for Jan. 2-5, 2014. The banquet will take place at the Hilton Anatole on the evening of Friday, Jan. 3.
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