FROM CBB NEWS SOURCE
Fairleigh Dickinson University Director of Athletics David Langford announced the hiring of Gary Puccio as Head Baseball Coach, released on Wednesday, August 4. Puccio has been named Coach of the Year six times in his career and has coached over 500 games at the collegiate level.
Puccio brings 17 years of coaching experience at the collegiate level and 12 years of professional experience as an associate scout for the Seattle Mariners. He comes to Fairleigh Dickinson after serving as the head coach at Briarcliffe College from 2005-2010. While with the Seahawks, Puccio took his squads to five-straight United States Collegiate Athletic Association (USCAA) tournaments. His teams made the Final Four three times and walked away with National Championships in 2006 and 2010. Puccio also coached 12 All-Americans at Briarcliffe.
Prior to that, Puccio was the head coach at Suffolk Community College from 1999-2002. He revitalized a program that had not made the playoffs in two years and took them to two playoff appearances in three years, including a Final Four appearance in the regional playoffs in 2000.
Puccio experienced his greatest success at Manhattan College, where he was the head coach from 1993-1998. In five years, he rejuvenated a program that ranked last in the country in Division I. He capped the program’s turnaround with a 20-win season in 1998, the most wins recorded by the team since 1903. Puccio was named MAAC Coach of the Year in 1996 and 1998.
Puccio began his collegiate coaching career at SUNY-Old Westbury, serving as the head coach from 1989-1993. During that span, he took over a winless program and was able to lead it to a Division III Tournament berth in his final season as coach. Puccio was also named the Knickerbocker Conference Coach of the Year in 1993.
Puccio becomes the program’s 11th head coach, replacing Jerry DeFabbia who served as head coach for six seasons from 2005-2010.
Puccio earned a bachelor’s degree at C.W. Post and later received his master’s degree from Dowling College. He taught high school math at Island Trees High School for the last 21 years. Puccio was also the pitching coach for two seasons (2002-2004) at Island Trees before he took over at Briarcliffe.