One third of the trio is gone.
Elon University associate head baseball coach Greg Starbuck has taken a position as a volunteer assistant at Clemson University, new Tigers coach Monte Lee announced Tuesday.
Starbuck, 51, spent the last 17 years at Elon as the recruiting coordinator and batting and baserunning instructor. At Clemson, he'll work with hitters, infielders and catchers.
The move breaks up one of the longest-tenured coaching staffs in all of Division I baseball. Starbuck, head coach Mike Kennedy (19 years at the helm) and assistant Robbie Huffstetler had coached the Phoenix together for the last 12 years. They were one of just six coaching staffs to have been together for that long.
Lee, the former College of Charleston coach, is a good friend of Kennedy's.
CAA COMMISSIONER TO RETIRE:The Colonial Athletic Association announced in June that commissioner Tom Yeager will retire at the end of the 2015-16 season, his 40th in college athletics.
Yeager is the only commissioner the CAA has had in its 30-year history and has overseen a league that’s won 19 national team championships and 33 individual national champions.
"It has been my privilege and honor to represent the outstanding institutions in the CAA for what will be 31 years," Yeager said in a release. "At the conference's core is our institutions' unwavering commitment to conduct their athletic programs as a vital component of their students' educational experience. I am very proud that this commitment has enabled us to create programs and a competitive environment that has enhanced each student's experience."
Yeager guided the CAA through a number of membership changes, notably in the last decade, growing the league’s footprint to eight states from Boston to Charleston, S.C.
Yeager, who’s been vocal in his stance on power-five autonomy and a number of other hot-button issues in college athletics, is the longest-tenured commissioner of a NCAA Division I conference. The CAA drew national attention when then-members George Mason University and Virginia Commonwealth University went to the Final Four in 2006 and 2011, respectively.
He welcomed Elon to the CAA a year ago from the Southern Conference, and spent time on campus for Elon’s inaugural CAA football game in October.
SoCon commissioner said he appreciated how helpful Yeager was during the realignment in 2012 and 2013, during which the CAA was in talks with then-SoCon members College of Charleston and Davidson College in addition to Elon.
“I have great respect for Tom, the job he’s done over so many years and the way he conducts himself,” Iamarino told the Richmond Times-Dispatch. “Even when the CAA was in the midst of inviting some of our members to consider joining them, Tom was very up front about it, kept me informed along the process and gave me the courtesy of letting me know when decisions were to be announced. Not all commissioners operate with such class.”
A national search will be conducted for Yeager’s replacement.
FOUR COMMIT TO ELON FOR FOOTBALL: The Elon football coaching staff has received verbal commitments from four players in the 2016 class.
The first to commit was offensive lineman Karl Hofmeister of Britt High School in Fayetteville.
Zavier Williams, a defensive back from Cedar Grove High School in Ellenwood, Ga., announced his commitment via Twitter.
Charlotte Christian High School tight end Alex Parker has also committed. One of his high school coaches tweeted a picture of Parker with Elon assistants Cris Reisert and Billy Riebock.
Marcus Williams, Jr., a three-star all-purpose back according to 247Sports, committed the day after Parker. He’s from Southwest Edgecombe High School, which is just southeast of Rocky Mount in eastern North Carolina.
WOMEN’S SOCCER ADDS ASSISTANT:The Elon women’s soccer team has a full staff again.
After operating last year with just one assistant coach, head coach Chris Neal announced the addition of Henry Zapata as an assistant, joining current assistant John Pardini.
Zapata was hired by the University of Massachusetts in February to work with the Minutemen’s goalkeepers, but his hire at Elon was announced June 2.
He spent the last two seasons as a volunteer assistant at the University of Georgia. Before that, he was an assistant at College of Charleston for a year and a volunteer assistant at the University of Illinois, where he played collegiately.
EX-ELON ASSISTANT NAMED CAMPBELL SOCCER COACH:Campbell University announced Dustin Fonder as its new men’s soccer coach in early June. Fonder was the Big South Coach of the Year in 2009 and 2010 while coaching High Point University.
Prior to when he took the High Point job, Fonder spent four years as an assistant at Elon under Darren Powell. In 2006, the Phoenix earned its first-ever national ranking.
DIVER COACHING AT CAMPBELL:Former Elon assistant Stuart Horne tapped into his old resources to fill an opening on his women’s soccer staff at Campbell.
He hired Raychel Diver, who played the last four years for Elon, as an assistant in January. The first three years Diver played, Horne was the associate head coach for the Phoenix.
"I knew Coach Horne as a coach and as a person while I was at Elon, and I knew what he could do," Diver said in a release. "Learning from him was really what got me here. I was really excited to have the opportunity to learn from him because he was such a great coach for me. Career-wise I thought it was great to learn from someone I really enjoyed playing for.”