FROM CBD NEWS SOURCE
NEW ORLEANS – When head coach Rick Jones needs to fill a spot on his coaching staff he has to look no further than the stable of accomplished players that he has tutored at Tulane. After James Jurries took a fulltime post over the summer, the Green Wave skipper will bring aboard former pitching standout Shooter Hunt as the programs volunteer assistant for the 2013 season.
Hunt was a first round selection by the Minnesota Twins in the 2008 Major League Baseball First Year Player Draft. In his professional career, hunt made 93 career appearances with 28 starts on the mound and compiled 193 innings. He fanned 219 batters – or 10.21 batters per nine innings – and was used primarily as a reliever during his final two seasons. Over his career he owned an opponent’s batting average of less than .250 and was named the Appalachian League Pitcher of the Week on July 14, 2008.
“Even during his time as a student-athlete, Shooter has always made it clear that coaching is something he has always wanted to do,” said Tulane head coach Rick Jones. “He has a natural ability to lead and that was very evident during his time on the diamond for our program. He has the natural ability to get the best out of those around him and when you couple that with his tremendous work ethic it can be a great thing for our program. He comes from a coaching family and I believe that he has a very bright future in this industry.”
Hunt, who was a position player for most of his career before focusing exclusively on pitching while with the Green Wave, will work with the outfielders and base runners, coach first base on game days and assist with the pitching staff in his new role.
A stalwart on the mound during his career on the Uptown campus, Hunt currently holds the top opponent’s batting average in Tulane history at .204, while ranking fifth in strikeouts per nine innings (10.33) an seventh in earned run average (2.65). He earned All-America accolades from Baseball American, Collegiate Baseball Magazine, the National Collegiate Baseball Writers and Rivals.com after his junior campaign, was a two-time Frist Team All-Conference USA selection and played two summers in the Cape Cod Baseball League.
In his Tulane career, Hunt posted a 2.65 earned run average in 200.1 innings on the mound and boasted an overall record of 15-10. He issued just 101 walks and fanned 230 batters, while allowing just 34 extra base hits in 31 starts on the mound.
Jurries spend the past two seasons as the volunteer assistant coach at Tulane, working with the team’s base runners, coaching first base on game day and organizing the team’s schedule during the offseason.
“Coach Jurries did a great job as the volunteer assistant for our program the past two seasons,” said Jones, “and there is no question that (coaching) is his life’s calling. For him to get an opportunity to move into a fulltime role is well deserved …The fact that James is going into our hall of fame this fall speaks to his career as a player and his stature as an Academic All-American shows his dedication to the term student-athlete.”
During his two seasons on campus, Jurries watched as five of his pupils earned All-Conference USA accolades and six garnered All-State honors from the Louisiana Sports Writers Association.
He helped tutor the Green Wave hitters to a Conference USA best .305 batting average, while they led the conference in four other categories in 2012. Tulane was among the top-three Conference USA schools in 13 major offensive categories and finished the year 13th in on-base percentage (.397) and 19th nationally in batting average.
Jurries returned to the Uptown campus in 2011 after playing five seasons in the Atlanta Braves organization, reaching the Triple A level, from 2002 until 2006 and had spent the last two seasons teaching and coaching at Brazoswood High School, his alma mater. Jurries had a stellar career for the Green Wave, completing his four years on campus by becoming the first player in Tulane history (any sport) to earn All-American and Academic All-American honors in the same season.
Jurries completed his career at Tulane with more than just his Bachelor’s degree in business, he still ranks among the top-ten in school history in 27 categories and is tied for the career lead in runs scored (284). He played in 239 career games and helped the Olive and Blue to four consecutive appearances in the NCAA Regional, along with the 2001 NCAA Super Regional and College World Series.