Marshall hires former Ohio State baseball coach Beals

Published 7:20 pm Thursday, January 5, 2023

By Grant Traylor

Marshall Sports Information

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. Following Board of Governors approval today, Marshall University President Brad D. Smith announced that the university has hired Gregory Beals as the head baseball coach of the Thundering Herd.

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Beals is the 29th head coach in program history.

We couldn’t be more pleased to welcome Coach Beals to Marshall University,” Smith said. “He brings a wealth of experience and a stellar skill set to our university’s baseball program.  Marshall is committed to building our baseball program, from the bricks and mortar of our new stadium to a dedicated, championship coach who is uniquely qualified and committed to moving our program forward. We are passionate and poised for the next chapter in our storied baseball history.”

 Marshall Athletic Director Christian Spears said Beals is the perfect fit as a head coach at Marshall.

 “For us, it came down to specific traits that we know Coach Beals possesses: courage, competence, confidence and competitiveness,” Spears said. “First, Coach Beals has tremendous courage. He knows our situation at Marshall and sees nothing but promise. He is overtly excited to build a program in one of college baseball’s most competitive and well-respected conferences while ushering Marshall baseball into an exciting new era that will soon feature its own on-campus stadium. Coach Beals also possesses the competence and confidence necessary to take on such a job. He knows what it takes to establish a program from the ground up–from development to recruiting to cultivating a winning aura around the program. He has been successful in doing so before and we know he can do it again with us here at Marshall. Not only does he believe in himself, but also our administration’s vision for our baseball program, which is why he is eager to be at the forefront of building a program that fans will be proud of on and off the field. Lastly, it comes down to genuine competitiveness. At the end of the day, a winning experience can connect people forever, but you must put in the work necessary to reap such rewards. Coach Beals is the right leader with the right formula to accomplish all these goals, and we couldn’t be more excited to welcome him today.”

Before coming to Huntington, Beals was hired as head coach at the University of Akron this past July after spending 12 seasons at the helm of the Ohio State University Buckeyes.

During his time in Columbus, Beals took Ohio State to the NCAA Tournament three times (2016, 2018 and 2019) and won two Big Ten Championships in 2016 and 2019.

In addition to accumulating a 346-288-1 record with the Buckeyes, Beals coached 48 all-Big Ten performers, 32 student-athletes to pro contracts, 21 academic all-Big Ten student-athletes and seven All-America honorees and had a team GPA of 3.09.

Prior to his stint in Columbus, Beals served as head coach at Ball State University for eight seasons, compiling a 243-202 record from 2003-10 and leading the Cardinals to a 2006 Mid-American Conference Tournament title and subsequent NCAA Tournament berth.

Beals’ success at Ball State was just as strong in the classroom. In addition to having 21 players sign pro contracts and 18 Cardinals earn all-MAC honors, four players were named Academic All-Americans and 14 were named academic all-MAC honorees while the team had a combined GPA of 3.05.

Beals got his coaching start at as assistant coach at Kent State University in 1995, where he spent eight years as the hitting and catching instructor along with being the recruiting coordinator. During his time with the Golden Flashes, he helped the program reach the NCAA Regionals three times (1994, 2001 and 2002), two MAC regular-season titles (1996 and 2000) and a pair of MAC Tournament titles (2001 and 2002). On the field, he coached 36 student-athletes to all-MAC honors, saw 21 players sign professional contracts and 17 earn academic all-MAC awards.

Beals is a three-time Hall of Fame Inductee, having been inducted into the Clark County (Ohio) Baseball Hall of Fame in 2003, the Stark County (Ohio) Baseball Hall of Fame in 2006 and the Greater Akron Baseball Hall of Fame in 2011. He spent four years in the New York Mets organization after being drafted in the 21st round of the 1991 MLB draft.

Beals graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in human movement studies in 1995 from Kent State, later earning his Master of Arts in sports management there. He and his wife, Kathy, have three daughters: Kayla, Amber and Morgan.

The board also approved contracts for additional athletics personnel.