Simmons Field: Head Coach Tim Jamieson to Return for 2015 Season

Tim Jamieson - Photo by Trripleplay

In spite of a disappointing first two seasons in the SEC, word comes out today that MU Baseball Coach Jamieson will continue as head coach

Tim Jamieson just completed the second year of a three-year contract extension he received after winning the Big 12 Tournament Championship in the Tigers' final season before moving to the SEC.

Since that time, the Tigers have struggled.

In 2013, MU finished with an 18-32 record, 10-20 in the SEC, and managed to get into the SEC Tournament on the final weekend.  In that tournament, they lost a single-elimination game and did not receive an invitation to the NCAA Regionals.

In 2014, MU improved on their overall record from the year before, finishing 20-33.  But their SEC record was a dismal 6-24, including losing their final 15 conference games against a heavily stacked slate of high-ranked opponents.  Finishing in 14th and last place, they did not qualify for the SEC Tournament and will not be receiving a bid to Regionals.

There had been much talk among fans and followers of Mizzou Baseball as to whether Tim Jamieson should be replaced and not retained for the final season of his contract. Both at the ballpark and online, sentiment seemed to affirm that while most people think Tim Jamieson is a good guy, who runs a good clean program, and is even a good coach, he may not be the coach Mizzou needs in order to compete in the SEC.

Reaction on Twitter was varied from the national college baseball writers:

And from followers and fans:

Tim Jamieson has just completed his 20th season as the head coach of the Tigers.

Jamieson is the senior baseball coach in the SEC in terms of longevity.  He is the last remaining coach in Mizzou Athletics who was hired by former MU AD Joe Castiglione (now at Oklahoma) prior to the arrival of current AD Mike Alden.

The second-winningest coach in Mizzou Baseball history, Jamieson finished 2014  with a record of 642-504-2. In 2009, he passed legendary head coach John "Hi" Simmons on that list and trails only Gene McArtor's 733 victories. Tim Jamieson grew up in Columbia, MO. His father was an assistant coach with the Mizzou Football team under head coach Al Onofrio.

Jamieson is not the Lou Pinella type, always blowing his stack and yelling, although he can certainly lose his cool at times.  He's also not the Tommy Lasorda type, the glad-hander and publicity hog.  He's always been a fairly private person.

Columbia Missourian article by Ian Frazer this week offered a rare peek into the private life of Tim Jamieson:

The coach knows this season was far from ideal.

"I'll wear this year for a long time," Jamieson said.

...

"He kept telling me, 'Losing makes you stronger', and I kept thinking, 'OK, but winning would really be a lot more fun,'" Cindy Jamieson said.

There were rumors that his job was on the line after the 2002 season, due to failing to qualify for the Big 12 Tournament or the NCAA Regionals for a few consecutive years.

Jamieson did make it to both post-season tournaments in 2003 and went on to do so for 7 consecutive years. After a two year absence from the NCAA Regionals, Jamieson took the team back to the post-season in 2012, afterwinning Mizzou's final Big 12 Tournament.

After that season, Jamieson was given a three-year contract extension, a vote of confidence as he faced taking Mizzou Baseball into the SEC, considered by many to be the most dominant conference in D-1 Baseball.

Some fans have been calling for Jamieson's firing for years.  They say he hasn't been a good coach because he's never made it to the College World Series.  Within the inherent limitations of baseball at Mizzou, though, he's has a pretty good run.

I've always said that Tim Jamieson is a good man and a good coach, even he's not one of the greats.  He runs a clean program, and he has always earned my respect.

Here's a Tip of the Cap to Coach J.  I'm rooting for him to figure out how to turn this program around.  The fact is, though, next season will likely decide his future and that of Missouri Baseball.

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