Blackwood Earns 2009 Rawlings-NAIA National Baseball Coach of the Year

NathanBlackwood2FROM CBB NEWS SOURCE

KANSAS CITY, MO – The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) announced that Lubbock Christian University (TX) head coach Nathan Blackwood has been named the 2009 Rawlings-NAIA National Baseball Coach of the Year. The award was presented to coach Blackwood at the 2010 Rawlings-NAIA Awards Luncheon Friday in Dallas, Texas. The luncheon is part of the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) Convention which runs from Jan. 7-10 at the Dallas Hilton Anatole Hotel. Click here for a CBB interview with Blackwood.

Blackwood has compiled a 281-89 (.759) record in six seasons at Lubbock Christian. The 2009 season saw the Chaps win their second World Series title and their first since 1983. Going 52-8 last year, Lubbock Christian claimed the Sooner Athletic Conference Regular Season Championship, hosted and won the “Field No. 1” Opening Round Championship. His team also claimed the NAIA World Series Champions of Character team honor.

His team has been known for its offensive ability ranking in the top 10 statistically last year in numerous categories. The Chaps hit .382 over the course of the 60-game season and compiled a .700 slugging percentage. Other totals included 132 home runs, 167 doubles and 31 triples. Lubbock Christian led the nation last year in doubles per game (2.8 pg) and was second in home runs per game (2.2 pg) and triples per game (0.5 pg).

During his illustrious career, Blackwood has amassed three Sooner Athletic Conference titles and took his team to the World Series on two occasions (2006 and 2009). He has averaged over 46 victories each season, including four 50-plus win campaigns. During a 53-win season in 2008, Blackwood guided Lubbock Christian to its first No. 1 ranking since 1985.

A native of Lubbock, Texas, Blackwood attended Lubbock Christian High School where he played football, basketball and baseball for the Eagles in the late 1980s. Following graduation, Blackwood moved across the street to Lubbock Christian University where he played baseball in 1991 and 1992 and earned a Bachelor of Science degree upon graduation in 1995.

After finishing up his undergraduate work, Blackwood held several different coaching positions around West Texas. In 1998, he secured a job as the assistant baseball coach at Harding University (Ark.), a post he held for two years. In 2000, Blackwood received his Master’s of Education degree before taking over the head coaching position for the Chaps in the summer of 2003.

Entering the 2010 season, Blackwood has led the Chaps to a No. 1 ranking in the NAIA Baseball Coaches’ Preseason Top 25 poll. This is the first national coaching award for Blackwood.

During the Awards Luncheon, Hastings College (Neb.) head coach Jim Boeve was inducted into the NAIA Hall of Fame, in the meritorious service category. For the news release on his induction, click here. Other awards handed out were the NAIA-Rawlings Region Coaches-of-the-Year.

Convention Awards List

2010 NAIA Hall of Fame Inductee
Jim Boeve, Hastings College (Neb.)

2009 Rawlings-NAIA National Coach of the Year
Nathan Blackwood, Lubbock Christian University (Tenn.)

2009 NAIA-Rawlings Region Coaches-of-the-Year

David Beasley
Berry College (Ga.)
Opening Round Champions
Site: Mount Berry, Ga.

Denney Crabaugh
Oklahoma City University
Opening Round Champions
Site: Oklahoma City, Okla.

Oscar Hirschkorn
Fresno Pacific University (Calif.)
Opening Round Champions
Site: Sioux City, Iowa

Joe Schaefer

Point Loma Nazarene University (Calif.)
Opening Round Champions
Site: Azusa, Calif.

Nathan Blackwood
Lubbock Christian University (Texas)
Opening Round Champions
Site: Lubbock, Texas

Mark Brew (CBB interview)
Lee University (Tenn.)
Opening Round Champions
Site: Cleveland, Tenn.

Matt Griffin
Southern Poly State University (Ga.)
Opening Round Champions
Site: Hattiesburg, Miss.

Beauford Sanders
Campbellsville University (Ky.)
Opening Round Champions
Site: St. Charles, Mo.

Randy Stegall

Embry-Riddle University (Fla.)
Opening Round Champions
Site: Daytona Beach, Fla.