FROM CBB NEWS SOURCE
THIBODAUX – Nicholls State University Athletics Director Rob Bernardi announced the selection of Seth Thibodeaux as the Colonels new head baseball coach. Thibodeaux, who replaces former head coach Chip Durham, was the associate head coach under Durham and has been with the Colonels
for the past three years. The hiring is pending the approval of the University of Louisiana Systems Board.
“Seth has helped recruit every single player on our baseball team and has played a major role in nearly every aspect of the program. His familiarity with the team and the program was a big factor in choosing him as our head coach. We expect that Colonel Baseball will continue to advance under his leadership,” Bernardi said.
Thibodeaux was a major force in the rebuilding of the Nicholls baseball program under Durham. The Church Point, La. native served three seasons under Durham as the head assistant coach. His duties included serving as recruiting coordinator, hitting coach, and infield coach.
Thibodeaux takes over a program that he has helped to steadily improve over the last four years. In 2010, Thibodeaux was part of a coaching staff that helped the Colonels to their first postseason appearance in ten years and their first postseason win in 12 years when Nicholls upset No. 1 seed and regular season champion Texas State with a 13-2 win over the Bobcats in the opening round of the 2010 Southland Conference Tournament in May.
Thibodeaux helped lead Nicholls to several milestone accomplishments in 2010. The Colonels compiled a record of 27-29 in 2010, including a 15-18 Southland record. Nicholls clinched its first 20-win season since going 22-31 in 2005; its first ten-win conference season since going 11-15 in the Southland in 2002; its first 25-win of the season since
2003, and its first 15-win conference season since going 15-12 in conference competition in 2000. The Colonels finished just three wins shy of their first 30-win season since 1993.
Thibodeaux joined the Colonel program in 2008 and began retooling Nicholls offensive efforts. In his first season at Nicholls, Thibodeaux put together one of the most aggressive lineups in the Southland Conference, as Nicholls led the league in triples (27) and finished second in stolen bases (81). In 2009, the Colonels nearly doubled their
overall and conference win totals, and Nicholls outfielder Chris Murrill (recruited and coached by Thibodeaux) became the first Colonel position player in four years to be selected in the Major League Baseball First Year Player Draft.
Thibodeaux has also helped the Colonels rebuild their program off the field by overseeing the team’s NCAA academic and compliance efforts. In 2006, the Colonels’ APR score was just 835. By 2010, the Colonels surpassed the NCAA’s APR threshold of 925 for the first time in school history.
“I’m extremely excited for many reasons,” Thibodeaux said. “I’m very grateful to the university for this opportunity and to Chip for all he did, including helping me become a better coach, and leaving this program in such good standing when he left.”
“When I first got here, Chip and I sat down and put together a plan” Thibodeaux said. “We were going to focus on improving our recruiting, our academics, and our facilities. We really stuck to those goals, and we’re finally at a point now where we have a really good program. We have the bulk of our position players returning, we had a really good recruiting class for the third season in a row, and we’re very excited about the product we’re going to put on the field next year. With the improvements we’ve made academically, athletically and with our facilities, everything is happening at a good time for this program. We’re all very fortunate for that.”
Before coming to Nicholls in 2008, Thibodeaux served two years as an assistant coach at fellow Southland Conference school Southeastern Louisiana in Hammond, helping put together two recruiting classes that received national recognition from Baseball America. In his final season in Hammond, Thibodeaux helped Southeastern to a 34 wins, the Lions most in a decade, and a then-school record 16 wins in Southland Conference competition.
Thibodeaux began his college coaching career at Pearl River Community College in 2003. In his second season at PRCC, Thibodeaux helped the Wildcats to conference and state championship titles as well as a No. 2 national ranking in 2004. In 2005, Thibodeaux helped PRCC repeat as conference champs.
Thibodeaux played two seasons at LSU-Eunice in 2000 before transferring to William Carey College in Hattiesburg, Miss., where he finished his college playing career and earned his degree in physical education. After graduation, Thibodeaux played one season of professional baseball for the Baton Rouge Riverbats of the independent South East Professional Baseball League.
Thibodeaux is married to Janelle Thibodeaux (formerly Austrom) who was a soccer and softball player at William Carey College. One of eight children, Thibodeaux has a brother Mike who is the head baseball coach at Teurlings Catholic High School in Lafayette, La.