Any student-athlete who’s been recruited by a coach, only to see that coach leave for another program a year or more later will make generally the same statement: Don’t fall in love with a coach, fall in love with a school.
Some Oregon softball players might be feeling that way right about now after Ducks coach Mike White left Eugene for greener (drier?) pastures in Austin, Texas.
The coach who stated “why not Texas?” in a press release after joining the Longhorns elaborated on the process that led him from the Pac-12 to the Big 12.
New Texas softball coach Mike White impressive. He told me he thought Oregon thought he was bluffing. "They didn't understand Texas," he said. "They didn't understand the pull of Texas."
— Kirk Bohls (@kbohls) June 26, 2018
White left an Oregon program he helped build into a perennial contender, one that won five Pac-12 titles in six seasons and made the Women’s College World Series five times since 2012 (including 2018). The top-seeded Ducks were eliminated in 2018’s World Series after losses to Washington and Florida State, two teams who eventually met in the series’ final.
With White’s departure also comes the farewell of three key Ducks — Gwen Svekis, Jenna Lilley and DJ Sanders — with each being selected in the 2018 National Pro Fastpitch Draft. He leaves to replace longtime Texas coach Connie Clark, who retired after 22 years with the Longhorns.
Oregon will move to replace him in the coming days and weeks.