By David Bradford, for VFL Insider
After Dave Serrano’s six-year tenure on Rocky Top came to an end at the culmination of the 2017 season, athletic director John Currie wasted no time finding his replacement, announcing that Tony Vitello will be Vol baseball’s next man in charge on Wednesday morning.
Vitello spent the last four years as Arkansas’ assistant coach/recruiting coordinator. During his time in Fayetteville, the Razorbacks appeared in postseason play three times. He previously held positions at Salinas Packers, Missouri, and TCU, with Tennessee being his first opportunity as a head coach.
Currie’s statement on Vitello
“We are thrilled to bring Coach Vitello’s passion for baseball, relationship building and student-athlete development into the Tennessee athletics family,” Currie said in a statement released by the Tennessee athletics department. “Proven experience evaluating and recruiting at the highest level and in the grind of the SEC was an absolute prerequisite, and Coach Vitello checks all the boxes. He has a track record of helping to build healthy and competitive programs—from those earliest relationships formed during the recruiting process through the development of young men into major league ballplayers. Coach Vitello has been to a dozen NCAA Tournaments, and he’s been part of a staff that led a team to Omaha. He knows firsthand what it takes to win in the Southeastern Conference, and he has triumphed in recruiting battles for elite prospects in our SEC footprint and other talent-rich areas across the country.
“Throughout this process it has been inspiring to talk to many of the people who are passionate about Volunteer baseball—I believe that Coach Vitello is the right person to build our program into a perennial contender and bring championship baseball back to Knoxville.”
Complete information on the hire can be found here.