HARROGATE, TN -- After seven seasons as the assistant coach of the Lincoln Memorial University baseball team, Ryan Schmalz has accepted the position of head coach at Trevecca Nazarene University in Nashville, Tennessee.
Ryan Schmalz takes the helm at Trevecca Nazarene University as the school heads into the Division II era. He becomes the ninth coach in the history of Trojan baseball as he looks to lead TNU to capturing the inaugural G-MAC Baseball Championship.
"I am very excited about the opportunity to become a head coach, especially at a place like Trevecca," stated newly appointed TNU head coach Ryan Schmalz. "At the same time, it is incredibly hard to leave LMU. Jeff and I have a great relationship and I have learned so much from him. I have also built a deep relationship with the players. I have known most of them dating back to their high school or JUCO days. I have no doubt that Six and his team will be in the conversation for a SAC Championship regularly."
During his seven years at Lincoln Memorial University (2006-12), Schmalz served as Coach Jeff Sziksai's top assistant and recruiting coordinator. Along with his efforts on the recruiting trail, he was also the Railsplitters' hitting and catching coach. Schmalz's impact on the LMU Baseball program is immeasurable. In the three years prior to his arrival at LMU, the Railsplitters averaged 12 wins a season, a .263 batting average, .42 home runs per contest and 5.36 runs per game. Throughout his time with Lincoln Memorial University, the team averaged 28 wins a season, a .315 batting mark, .90 home runs per game and 7.7 runs per game.
In 2007, Schmalz honed the Railsplitters' offense to a .339 team batting average, ranking 20th in the nation. The 2009 squad ranked 18th in the nation with a .318 batting mark while the 2010 team ranked 21st in average and 10th in home runs.
In total, Schmalz recruited and coached 20 all-conference performers while eight players were either signed or drafted. This past season, he had the distinction of recruiting and coaching Division II All-American performer, Andre Rodriguez.
"I am so excited for Ryan and his family," commented Railsplitters' head coach Jeff Sziksai. "He is so deserving of this opportunity, and while I am saddened to lose a great assistant and friend, I know he will do an outstanding job at TNU.
"Ryan has been the consummate professional in his time at LMU. He has been incredibly loyal and hard-working, two characteristics that I value above all others within our program. He has paid his dues, and his reputation as a tireless worker and recruiter makes him an obvious choice to be a head coach."
Prior to working at LMU, Schmalz had a two-year stay at Morehead State University, a Division I program in Morehead, Kentucky, where he was vital in the recruiting process for the Eagles. In his two years, Schmalz coached the Ohio Valley Conference Player of the Year in Lance Seasor as well as Chicago White Sox draftee Henry Mabee. Schmalz's efforts with the Eagles increased the program's win-total by 15 from the previous year as the team led the OVC in runs scored, RBIs, doubles, home runs and total bases.
Before his coaching career began, Schmalz competed for Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Illinois. His first two years of college ball were played at Trinidad State Junior College in Trinidad, Colorado. During his time at Olivet Nazarene, Schmalz played for TNU Hall of Famer Elliot Johnson as well as the Tigers' first two NAIA World Series teams.
Schmalz graduated from Olivet Nazarene with a Bachelor of Science degree in Sports Management and received his Master of Arts degree from Morehead State University. He is married to Rebecca Geasa Schmalz and they have two daughters, Molly and Jane.
"Ryan will be dearly missed by our current and former players, co-workers and this community," coach Sziksai continued. "We are losing a great person, and great representative of the Blue and Grey. I wish my friend all the best in his new position."
On behalf of the entire Lincoln Memorial University athletic department, the Railsplitter community wishes Ryan Schmalz the best of luck as he begins the next portion of his career as the head coach of the Trevecca Nazarene University Trojans baseball team.