June 15, 2013
By Charles Goldberg
AUBURN — You want to talk baseball strategy? Sunny Golloway can do that.
You might want to listen to Auburn's new coach, too, considering he's won 681 games, coached in 14 of the last 15 NCAA Tournaments and knows when things just feel right.
Golloway says he used those baseball instincts when he decided to leave Oklahoma after talking to Auburn Athletics Director Jay Jacobs.
"Sometimes when you sit down with people you just hit it off and you know. I'm one of those people," Golloway said. "I know when to make a pitching change, I know when to call the hit-and-run, I know when to lay that bunt and I also know when to make a move."
Golloway made the move and sailed through his introductory press conference Saturday.
Golloway said he had been offered SEC jobs in the past, but "it wasn't the right time." But the timing was right for Auburn.
"I found very early there's a commitment to win championships, and that's what we're about," Golloway said.
Jacobs said Golloway will make $650,000 a year, putting him near the top of best-paid SEC baseball coaches.
"We wanted to hire a coach who was a proven winner and someone who had a proven track of winning," he said. "We talked to a lot of smart baseball people and we got a list together.
"It was a very thorough process."
Auburn came through with two big-time hires Friday when it announced it had hired Golloway from Oklahoma and two-time college softball World Series champion Clint Myers away from Arizona State.
"The goal wasn't what league they came from. The goal was 'let's hire people who can give our student-athletes'" the best chance to win, Jacobs said. "We went after the best."
Golloway said he's ready.
"I will tell you this: we're going to win, and we're going to win quickly," he said. "The resources are in place, so it's about moving forward."
Golloway says he'll meet with his players starting Monday. He also won't shy away from recruiting.
"For me it's real simple, if you know baseball and you know talent and you have a proven university that young men desire to come to, it's an easy fit," he said.
"The question about recruiting…It's not going to be a problem. We're going to hit the ground running and we're going to go out and win those battles. I love that part of the job. I love the chase. I love the competition."
On the field, Golloway says he likes a strategy that puts pressure on the defense. He says he likes what people say about his game: "You don't know what they're going to do or when they're going to do it, but they're going to do it. That kind of sums it up."
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