The Seminoles pitching coach, Jimmy Belanger, was poached by in-conference foe Clemson, Thursday night. It sure would have been nice keep someone who has developed into a proven commodity during his time at FSU but the likelihood that Belanger will be a head coach in the not so distant future is high.
Ideally the ‘Noles are looking for someone who can help get the program back on it’s feet over the next couple of years.
As far as we know, the other paid assistant coach on staff, Mike Metcalf, is still employed with the program. He currently serves as the Recruiting Coordinator as well as working with certain position groups. His background as a MLB scout and ties to the Sunshine State are invaluable and if Jarrett wanted continuity on his staff, keeping Metcalf would be a solid choice.
If Jarrett decides to start with a clean slate of coaches at Florida State he could bring along with him Rich Wallace, who he hired when he became the head coach at Notre Dame.
Wallace is relatively young, played and graduated from UCF in 2004. Since then he has served in multiple roles at different schools. In his longest tenure he served as recruiting coordinator and hitting coach at High Point University for eight seasons.
He then moved onto Creighton in the same role and was considered one of the top recruiters in the Big East. His final stint prior to South Bend was an assistant at Jacksonville where his teams were one of the most potent in their conference. Following Link in returning to the state of Florida could prove helpful to one of the most anemic offenses Florida State has ever fielded.
The pitching coach at Notre Dame, Chuck Ristano, has served in that role for 12 years. All of his experience is in the Midwest and Northeast with no ties to Florida or the South. His wife is an associate coach with the Notre Dame softball team. Additionally, Notre Dame is now looking for a new head coach. This name just doesn’t make sense in Tallahassee.
A name that has been rumored in Tallahassee as a contender for pitching coach is the coach who currently fills that role in Tuscaloosa. Jason Jackson has been the Tide’s pitching coach for the past six years. Before moving to Alabama he served in the same capacity for eight years at Florida Atlantic.
Another factor to consider is that Jackson is a Tallahassee native, played high school ball at Florida High, college ball at JUCO and earned an undergraduate and graduate degree from Florida State University. He is considered an excellent pitching coach and good recruiter, serving as the recruiting coordinator on multiple staffs.
Summer is prime-time for coaches to scout high school ball players so one would think that Jarrett would not want to waste anytime assembling his staff. Given the quick timeline in which he was hired the expectation that a additional hires could be complete within a weeks time is not out of the question.