Georgia names Tony Baldwin new softball coach

After the Bulldogs’ win against Florida on Saturday, May 29, 2021 at Katie Seashole Pressly Softball Stadium in Gainesville, Fla. (Chris Kim/University of Florida)
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After the Bulldogs’ win against Florida on Saturday, May 29, 2021 at Katie Seashole Pressly Softball Stadium in Gainesville, Fla. (Chris Kim/University of Florida)

Credit: ChrisKim

Tony Baldwin has been named the head coach of the University of Georgia softball program, the school announced Monday.

Baldwin becomes the third head coach in the 25-year history of Georgia softball. He has served on the Georgia coaching staff under Lu Harris-Champer for nine seasons. Harris-Champer recently announced her retirement. This is Baldwin’s first head coaching job.

During Baldwin’s tenure on staff, Georgia has appeared in eight NCAA Tournaments (no tournament in 2020). The Bulldogs have advanced to six Super Regionals and three appearances in the Women’s College World Series (2016, 2018, 2021).

“When you lose an incredible leader like Coach Lu (Harris-Champer), it is vital that your replacement has the ability build on established success and continue to elevate the program,” Athletic Director Josh Brooks said in a statement. “After a competitive search, I am confident we found the right person, leader and coach in Tony Baldwin. The outpouring of support for Tony from alumni and the nation’s most respected coaches was impressive, but it was the strength of his internal and external relationships, his recruiting prowess, particularly in the state of Georgia, and his coaching reputation that set him apart.”

Baldwin’s tenure in Athens includes a stint as the volunteer coach from 2011-12 before rejoining the staff in 2014 as an assistant coach. He was promoted to associate head coach following the 2016 season. He has served as the Bulldogs’ offensive coach and recruiting coordinator.

“I am extremely honored and thankful for the opportunity to lead the University of Georgia softball program,” Baldwin said in a statement. “I am deeply appreciative that President Morehead, Athletic Director Josh Brooks, Senior Deputy Athletic Director Darrice Griffin, and Deputy Athletic Director Stephanie Ransom have entrusted me with this opportunity. I have so much pride for this program, all that it stands for, and the women that have built it. Today truly is a dream come true. I am humbled and so very honored to represent them as their head coach.”