After a run to the College World Series that ended in disappointing fashion with two straight losses in Omaha, Texas Longhorns head coach David Pierce fired longtime assistant Sean Allen, reassigned longtime assistant Philip Miller, and was forced to find a replacement for volunteer assistant Troy Tulowitzki.
The work of revamping a coaching staff that included two assistants in Allen and Miller who had worked under Pierce since he became a head coach is now officially complete with Thursday’s announcement of two new hires and a new role for the former coordinator and hitting and pitching development.
Former Baylor head coach Steve Rodriguez, who has 19 years of experience leading the Bears and the Waves, his alma mater, is the new hitting coach, infield coach, and recruiting coordinator.
“Coach Rod brings experience to the Texas Baseball staff, having played at the big-league level and been an assistant and head coach at the Division I level,” Pierce said. “He brings energy and enthusiasm to the Forty Acres and can recruit the best players in the country to our program. He has a knack for developing players to reach their full potential and is an absolute home run hire for Texas Baseball. He understands winning with integrity and will be an unbelievable addition to our staff.”
The new pitching coach is former San Jacinto volunteer assistant Woody Williams, who helped the Gators reach the Junior College World Series five times in his seven seasons at the Houston junior college. Williams also spent 15 years pitching in the major leagues for four different teams.
“Woody is one of the best pitching minds in the country and builds a foundation with his staff through relationships and trust,” Pierce said. “Woody has hit the ground running and can’t wait to start building the foundation with our recruits and current players. He is a veteran of 15 years in the big leagues and has a reputation of being a fierce competitor. It will be a treat every day for our players to learn from these two great men.”
Replacing Tulowitzki as the volunteer assistant is Caleb Longley, who spent the 2022 season serving as the coordinator of hitting and pitching development. Longley previously coached at Arizona State for two seasons and served as a high-performance training coach after developing a training tool for hitting and arm care routines used across multiple sports. He’ll work with the outfielders and catchers.
Miller is moving into a new role as special assistant to the head coach after previously working with the Texas catchers and outfielders and assisting with hitters and recruiting.
“Philip has been on my staff for 11 years at three different universities and has excelled in every possible role,” Pierce said. “His selfless approach has been evident and has always put the program’s needs first. It is only natural to put him in this position to help in all aspects of the program. The University of Texas is lucky to have Philip’s dedication to excellence and he will again be a major contributor to our program’s success. I appreciate our administration for recognizing the need for this role and committing to a very proactive approach to position our program as one of the best in the country. This cutting-edge position will only enhance our players’ experience while being on the Forty Acres and life afterwards.”