PHONE (502) 873-4207
Entering his fourth season, Head Coach Matt Downs, has been named the SLIAC Coach of the Year the past two seasons after leading the Golden Eagles to back-to-back SLIAC tournament appearances.
The past season, Downs' helped guide the Golden Eagles to a top-25 national ranking finishing atop the SLIAC East Division with a 31-12 record. For the second straight season SU has performed both on the field and in the classroom. Jimi Keating and Garrett Wilson were both named All-American, while Keating and Matt Harper were named Google Cloud Academic All-Americans.
In 2017, Golden Eagle Nine as they had seven SLIAC All-Conference selections including three first team picks, four All Region Selections, and two CoSIDA Academic All Americans. All of which are the most selected in one season in program history. In addition, Jimi Keating was named an ABCA and D3baseball.com All-American becoming the first Golden Eagles to earn All-American honors in the NCAA era. The team reached other new heights in statistical categories. The offense slugged 44 homeruns ranking 8th in the nation, as well as 4th and 2nd in the country in strikeout to walk ration and strikeouts per 9 innings. Kyle Olliges and Jimi Keating cracked the top 5 in strikeouts individually with Kyle 4th in the country and Jimi leading the nation with 124 strikeouts.
In his first season, Downs helped guide the Golden Eagle nine to a 22-17 record including a win over No. 19 ranked Baldwin-Wallace. Downs had four players named to the SLIAC All-Conference Team with Korie Vire and Kam Bruner garnering First Team honors.
Prior to coaching at Spalding, Downs did a one year stint as the Assistant Coach and Recruiting Coordinator at NCAA Division III Centre College in Danville, Ky. Downs' impact on the program was evident by lowering the Colonel pitching staff's walks per nine innings from 4.55 in 2014 to 3.38 in the 2015 season, as well as, raising their marks from 5.75 strikeouts per nine innings in 2014 to a remarkable 7.04 clip in 2015, highlighted by junior right-handed pitcher Rob Caudill, who led the Colonels with an impressive 10.9 strikeouts per nine innings. Downs also guided three Colonels, including Caudill, to their selection on the 2015 All-Southern Athletic Association teams.
His impact on the recruiting front was felt on the Centre campus, highlighted by 13 new players in this year's class, with seven from the state of Kentucky. Downs' class also boasts three players who earned All-State nods during their senior campaigns.
Prior to coaching at Centre, Downs spent two years with the Spalding U. baseball program, helping the Golden Eagles set a NCAA Division III school-record with 33 wins in 2013, guiding a pitching staff that year ranked 13th nationally in NCAA Division III in strikeouts (320) and 17th in strikeouts per nine innings (7.8). In 2014, Downs saw the Eagle hurlers to new heights, finishing fourth nationally in strikeout to walk ratio (3.08), leading the SLIAC in strikeouts and strikeouts per game.
A Louisville, Ky. native and Southern High School graduate, Downs was a four-year member of the Spalding baseball team from 2009-2012. His career is highlighted by two appearances in the United Small College Athletic Association (USCAA) World Series, with the Eagles finishing fourth in 2011 and culminating with a National Championship in 2012.