Austin Peay State University signs baseball head coach Roland Fanning to contract extension – Clarksville Online

Clarksville, TN – After meeting with the head baseball coach Roland Fanning lead the Austin Peay State University (APSU) baseball team to its first conference championship since 2013, vice president and director of athletics Gerald Harrison announced Thursday that he signed Fanning to a contract extension through the 2028 season.

In just his second year as governor’s coach, Fanning led Austin Peay State University to the 2024 Atlantic Sun Conference title in the program’s second year in the league. APSU’s 35 wins last season were its most since a 44-win campaign in 2013 and an 11-game improvement a year after seeing a six-game improvement in its first season in Clarksville.

“Last season we witnessed championship level baseball, which is a testament to the hard work of Roland and his coaching staff,” Harrison said. “His team not only works hard on the field, but they also work just as hard in the classroom and demonstrate their commitment to the ‘Total Gov Concept’ every day. I am delighted that Roland has agreed to this extension and look forward to where he will lead Clarksville’s hometown baseball team into the future.”

“I am extremely excited to be the head baseball coach at Austin Peay State University,” Fanning said. “My wife Beverly and I, along with our daughters Emery and Eastyn, would like to thank Gerald and President Mike Licari for their commitment to our family and the Austin Peay State University baseball program. Their support is essential to the growth of this program, and I look forward to capturing more championship moments with Austin Peay State University Baseball.

Austin Peay State University head baseball coach Roland Fanning greets the crowd after the Governors clinched a share of the 2024 Atlantic Sun Conference regular season title on May 17. (APSU Sports Information)

“I would also like to recognize our coaches and players and thank them for sticking together and staying in Clarksville over the past two seasons to create a locker room unmatched in today’s college athletics climate. The landscape of college athletics is constantly changing, but their loyalty to what we creates nothing but elite. Together we will work extremely hard to build a successful program on the field, in the classroom and in our community. We look forward to continuing our championship tradition with the unconditional support of our university, our athletic department, donors , alumni base and the most loyal fans in college athletics.”

Fanning’s 2024 gubernatorial run turned out to be one of the best offenses in the country. APSU finished the season leading all Division I programs in batting average (.359), home runs per game (2.61), on-base percentage (.455), runs scored (10.9 runs per game) and slugging percentage (.661). Meanwhile, Austin Peay State University’s pitchers became just the fourth staff in program history to average more than 9.0 strikeouts per game, with 9.49 strikeouts per game, which ranked 42nd nationally.

But the 2024 squad will be mostly remembered for their amazing home runs. He finished the season with 146 home runs, nearly doubling the program record, and also set a program record with 12 grand slams. Outfielder Lyle Miller-Green was the main leader of the operation and hit a program record with 30 home runs. Outfielder John Bay finished the season with 24 home runs — one shy of the old program high — but set a program record with four grand slams. That duo was joined by five other Governors who finished with double-digit home run totals, while 12 Governors hit a home run in 2024.

The Governors took home four of the Atlantic Sun Conference’s major honors, led by Fanning’s Coach of the Year honor – the first by a Governor’s head coach since 2013. Miller-Green was the league’s player and athlete of the year while at shortstop. Jon Jon Hosts the ASUN Defensive Player of the Year award. Miller-Green and Gazdar also led a record group of 10 Austin Peay State University athletes recognized on the 2024 All-ASUN Teams.

In addition, Miller-Green and Gazdar were both named All-Americans by multiple organizations. Miller-Green was a consensus All-American, including first-team nods from the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) and Perfect Game. Gazdar was a second team All-American selected by the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA).

Fanning’s teams have also excelled in the classroom, earning a 3.0 GPA in all four semesters he has been at the helm. Miller-Green and Gazdar became the program’s first-ever Academic All-Americans.

In addition, Miller-Green’s Scholar-Athlete of the Year honors led a group of three governors to earn Academic All-ASUN recognition last season. Gazdar made the team for the second year in a row, while starting as a pitcher Jacob Weaver took his first honor.

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