RIVERDALE, N.Y. – Manhattan College Athletic Director Bob Byrnes announced today that Jim Duffy has been tabbed to take over as head coach of the Jaspers’ baseball program. Duffy comes to Riverdale after seven seasons as an assistant coach at Seton Hall, where he helped the Pirates win the Big East championship and advance to the NCAA Tournament in 2011.
“Jim brings playing, coaching and professional baseball experience to an established program here at Manhattan College,” Byrnes said. “His knowledge, passion and desire to lead our program were very evident during the interview process. Jim is an outstanding fit for our program and I am confident he will continue the tradition of success that the program has experienced in recent years.”
Duffy began his coaching career as an assistant at his alma mater in 2001. That season, Seton Hall won its first Big East championship since 1987. In 2003, he was promoted to full-time assistant coach. Duffy worked primarily with the Pirates’ hitters and outfielders while also assisting with recruiting, scouting and team travel. Nine of Duffy’s players eventually moved on to professional baseball careers.
In addition, he was the head coach of the Monmouth Monarchs of the ABCCL collegiate summer league from 2004-10, leading the team to a league championship in 2005.
“My family and I are honored and excited to have the opportunity to be a part of Manhattan College, its Athletic Department and its championship baseball program that Coach Kevin Leighton has built,” Duffy said. “I thank Dr. (Richard) Satterlee (Manhattan’s Vice President of Student Life), Bob Byrnes and the entire Manhattan staff for entrusting me to be the next head baseball coach at Manhattan College. I also extend a special thanks to Seton Hall baseball, Coach Mike Sheppard, Rob Sheppard and Phil Cundari for all they have done for me during my time at Seton Hall as a player and a coach to ultimately prepare me for my new role here at Manhattan College.
“I coached Kevin Leighton at Seton Hall on the 2001 Big East Championship team, and it’s obvious his teams at Manhattan have a passion to win as well. It’s an honor and a pleasure for me to now pick up at Manhattan where he left off. I’m excited about helping these young men develop and reach their maximum potential both on and off the field. It’s my full intention for this program not to skip a beat.”
A 1996 Seton Hall graduate, Duffy was a four-year starter at first base the Pirates. He is Seton Hall’s all-time leader in putouts (1,387) while also ranking second in hits (247) and at-bats (709) and fifth in runs scored (165). A three-time All-Big East selection, Duffy was named New Jersey College Player of the Year and earned All-America honors after finishing ninth in the nation with a .429 batting average in 1995. The following season, he had a school-record 29-game hitting streak.
In 1997, he signed a free agent contract with the Houston Astros. He was an outfielder in the Astros system for four years, advancing as high as Double-A before retiring in 2000.
Duffy takes over a team that notched its sixth consecutive 30-win season in 2011. In addition, the Jaspers won the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) regular season and tournament titles and advanced to the NCAA Tournament Gainesville Regional, their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2006.