SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Sacramento State Director of Athletics Terry Wanless has announced that associate head coach Reggie Christiansen will succeed John Smith, who will retire following the 2010 season, as the school’s baseball coach.
“I am very excited to announce Reggie Christiansen as our next head baseball coach beginning in the 2011 season,” Wanless said. “I have been very impressed with not only Reggie’s work ethic and ability to teach the game of baseball, but his integrity and character. He has been a great asset to coach Smith, and I look forward to them working together
during coach’s final season.”
Christiansen, 34, is entering his second season with the Hornets, and first as the team’s associate head coach. He played a key role this past season in helping lead Sacramento State to its best record since 2003. Serving as the team’s hitting coach, the Hornets posted their fourth highest batting average (.318) and fourth highest home run total (63) in school history. Eight Hornet players posted career-best averages at the plate, and seven posted career-highs in home runs and RBI.
“I’d like to thank Dr. Wanless and President Gonzalez for giving me the opportunity to lead the program following Coach Smith’s retirement,” Christiansen said. “I’d also like to thank my wife for her continued support, as she has endured living in five different cities in the past eight years while I moved through the coaching ranks. I am certainly looking forward to the chance to work with a group of young men that are eager to succeed. I’m excited about the opportunity to help this program grow and build on the foundation that was developed by Coach Smith over the past 32 years.”
Prior to coming to Sacramento State, Christiansen was given the task of building a Division I baseball program during his four seasons with the Jackrabbits, taking over at the beginning of their reclassification period. Christiansen posted a 96-113 record at South Dakota State, turning a 12-win team in Division II a year previous to his hire in 2004 into a team that won the Division I Independent Tournament in 2007, collecting a 34-19 record.
Prior to his arrival at South Dakota State, Christiansen was an assistant at the University of Kansas under Ritch Price for two seasons. During his time with the Jayhawks he served as first base coach and worked as a hitting instructor, while also overseeing the outfielders.
He spent the 2002 season as the head coach of his alma mater, Menlo College, in Atherton, Calif, where he had previously spent time as an assistant coach from 1997-99. He spent the 2001 season as the head coach in his hometown at Ferndale High School, and also spent time with three summer teams as an assistant coach, working with the San Mateo Bulldogs, the Humboldt Crabs and the Topeka Capitals.
“I’m excited and very supportive of Dr. Wanless’ decision to announce coach Christiansen as the program’s next head coach,” Smith said. “In a short period of time at Sacramento State, Reggie has demonstrated the work ethic, knowledge, and ability to teach the game the way it should be taught. He is a man of integrity with a high sense of morals, and I feel comfortable knowing that the program will continue on the right path.”
Smith announced his retirement on October 2, and will be stepping down after 32 years at the helm of the program.