Mainieri Elected to ABCA Hall of Fame
by Bill Franques, Sr. Associate SID
BATON ROUGE, La. - LSU
coach Paul Mainieri has earned college baseball's highest honor, as he
has been selected for induction into the American Baseball Coaches
Association Hall of Fame.
Mainieri, who has a 1,122-614-7 record
in 30 seasons of collegiate coaching, will be inducted into the Hall of
Fame on January 3, 2014 at the annual ABCA convention in Dallas.
He is No. 10 on the career wins list for active NCAA coaches, and he is
one of only six active coaches to have won 1,000 games and an NCAA
Mainieri will join in the Hall of Fame
his father, Demie Mainieri, who coached Miami-Dade North Community
College to 1,012 wins and a national title in his 30-year career. Demie
and Paul Mainieri will be the only father-son combination in the ABCA
Hall of Fame.
"It was never my goal to be selected for this
wonderful honor, being inducted into the American Baseball Coaches
Association Hall of Fame," Paul Mainieri said. "When I decided to go
into coaching as a young man, it was simply with the purpose of helping
young people develop their God-given talents to the fullest, and
teaching them how to succeed in baseball and in life. My father taught
me this lesson and it has been my guiding light throughout my career. I
never thought that 30 years later I would have had the opportunities I
have had to coach at four amazing institutions - St. Thomas University,
the United State Air Force Academy, Notre Dame and LSU.
have been so many people that have been a part of my life and my career
along the way; without them, nothing would have been possible. I have
had the privilege of coaching so many tremendous young men, have been
aided by many wonderful assistant coaches, had so much help from
talented support staff, and always experienced the best of
administrative support. All of the people that have influenced me
and contributed to these programs for the past 30 years are a part of
this tremendous honor."
In six seasons at LSU, Mainieri has
guided the Tigers to two College World Series appearances, winning the
national championship in 2009. He has also directed LSU to three NCAA
Regional titles, two Southeastern Conference championships, three SEC
Tournament titles and three SEC Western Division crowns.
has a 258-122-2 mark at LSU, and he is the second-winningest coach in
Fighting Tiger annals, trailing only Skip Bertman, who was 870-330-3 in
18 seasons (1984-2001).
Mainieri reached a coaching milestone on
the second playing date of the 2010 season, as he earned his 1,000th
career victory when LSU defeated Centenary, 25-8, on February 20 in
Alex Box Stadium.
Prior to becoming LSU's coach in June 2006,
Mainieri directed the Notre Dame program in 12 seasons (1995-2006) to
533 wins, nine conference titles, nine NCAA tournament berths and a
College World Series appearance in 2002. He also coached at St. Thomas
University in Miami from 1984-88, and at the Air Force Academy from
There have been 260 men inducted into the ABCA Hall of
Fame, including three of Mainieri's mentors - his father, Demie, was
inducted in 1988; his college coach, Ron Maestri of UNO, was inducted
in 1991; and Bertman, who hired him at LSU, was inducted in 2003.
be thought of in the same category as so many of my heroes growing up
is just overwhelming," Mainieri said. "To be in the same fraternity
with my idol, who happens to also be my father, as well as my
phenomenal college coach Ron Maestri and the great Skip Bertman is
incomprehensible to me. These people have always been bigger than life
to me and I am just humbled by this selection."
Mainieri will be
joined by six other inductees in 2014, including two other active
coaches - Jack Leggett of Clemson and Pete Dunn of Stetson. There are
only four other active coaches in the ABCA Hall of Fame - Mike Martin
of Florida State, Mark Marquess of Stanford, Mike Gillespie of UC
Irvine and John Anderson of Minnesota.
There are 19 voting
members on the ABCA Hall of Fame Committee and a candidate must be
named on 75% of the ballots to gain induction.
Mainieri said the devotion of his wife, Karen, and their four children has allowed him to succeed in a demanding profession.
family has made many sacrifices along the way in order for me to be
able to do my job," Mainieri explained. "Karen has been the backbone of
our family and has supported me in every decision I have ever made
about my coaching career. My children - Nick, Alex, Sami and
Tommy - have understood that I have had a job to do and have sacrificed
having their father at home as often as they would have liked, yet they
have relished in the successes of our teams as much as I have. No
success I have ever had in my career would have meant anything to me if
I didn't have a wonderful family with whom to share the joy."