The University of Tennessee has found their new head baseball coach. New Athletic Director John Currie has found his man. It’s Arkansas assistant Tony Vitello.
#Vols hire Arkansas assistant Tony Vitello as their new head baseball coach. Elite recruiter, for sure.— Wes Rucker (@wesrucker247) June 7, 2017
Vitello will follow Dave Serrano’s disappointing tenure. Tennessee finished 6th in the SEC East 4 out of Serrano’s 5 seasons at the helm. He was only over the .500 mark twice of his 5 year run.
Vitello is considered one of the nation’s best recruiters, which is obviously half the battle. He’s 38 years old and was Arkansas’ recruiting coordinator along with his duties as an assistant coach.
Tennessee opted to go young here, which I love. This program needed a jolt of energy and talent. Hopefully Vitello can deliver on both fronts.
John Currie released a statement on the hire this morning.
“We are thrilled to bring Coach Vitello’s passion for baseball, relationship building and student-athlete development into the Tennessee athletics family,” Currie said. “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."
Tennessee signed Vitello to a five year deal, which will pay him just south of $500,000 annually.