Paul Mainieri to Be LSU's New Head Baseball Coach; Barbier to Join Team as Assistant

Mainieri
Mainieri
Barbier (Image courtesy mcneesesports.cstv.com)
Barbier (Image courtesy mcneesesports.cstv.com)

BY:  STEVE SCHNEIDER, WAFB 9SPORTS, SPORTS DIRECTOR
        JAMES VERRETT, 9SPORTS

Sources close to the LSU baseball program tell WAFB 9 SPORTS Athletic Director Skip Bertman has chosen Smoke Laval's successor.

Former LSU baseball player Paul Mainieri will be named LSU's new head baseball coach at a Wednesday news conference, set for noon, sources say.

Mainieri has won 533 games in 12 seasons at Notre Dame, and gave the Irish their first college world series trip in 45 years, when his team beat top-ranked Florida State in 2002 to advance to Omaha.

Mainieri, who was a Tiger in 1976, also played two seasons at UNO and his wife, Karen, is a Louisiana native.

Bertman is also familiar with the 48-year-old Mainieri because Mainieri is a Miami native, whose father was a high school coach while Bertman was also a prep coach and later an assistant coach for the Miami Hurricanes.

WAFB 9SPORTS has also learned former LSU baseball infielder Blair Barbier will join Mainieri's staff as an assistant coach.   It is unclear what role Barbier will have on the staff. 

Barbier, currently an assistant baseball coach at McNeese State University in Lake Charles, was a member of two national championship baseball teams with the Tigers.

Former LSU baseball coach Smoke Laval resigned from the university earlier this month.

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The following information is courtesy of the university of Notre dame and reflects mainieri's career at that university:

The Paul Mainieri File (updated to include 2006 season)

  • Hire Date: Aug. 25, 1994
  • Career Record (after '06 season): 864-492-4 (.637, 24 seasons)
  • At Notre Dame (after '06): 533-213-3 (.714, 12 seasons)

    Coaching Awards

  • ABCA Mid-east Region Coach of the Year - 2001, 2002
  • BIG EAST Coach of the Year - 2001
  • College Baseball Insider National Coach of the Year - 2000

  • Birth date: Aug. 29, 1957
  • Hometown: Miami, Florida
  • Education: 1980 - B.S. in physical education from Florida International University ... 1982 - M.S. in sports administration from St. Thomas (Fla.) Univ.

  • Married to the former Karen Fejes
  • Children: Nicholas (22), Alexandra (21), Samantha (19) and Thomas (11)

    The Mainieri Era (`95-'06) - By The Numbers
    3,507 - Record-setting attendance at Eck Stadium for April 21, 2006, game vs. Rutgers
    2,514 - Record-setting Eck Stadium season avg. attendance in 2006
    .740 - Win pct. in BIG EAST games (192-67-2) 533 - Total victories
    231 - ND-record scoring streak ('99-'02)
    215 - Recent scoring streak ('02-'06)
    100% - Team graduation rate (among four-year players; 71-of-71)
    73 - Record-setting 1997 home run total
    51 - Record-setting 2004 victory total
    47 - Players who have moved on to pro ball (as of June 25, 2006)
    44 - Average victories per season
    36 - Players selected in the MLB draft
    36 - Different home states of ND players in his 12 seasons
    25-1 - NCAA win over South Alabama ('02)
    24 - Players with 3.0+ GPA (spring '06)
    24 - Players drafted who were not drafted out of high school
    22-4 - Record-setting BIG EAST mark in '01
    21 - Players with 3.0+ GPA (fall '05)
    18 - Consecutive BIG EAST wins ('01)
    18 - Players drafted in first 10 rounds
    14 - All-America seasons
    10 - Academic All-America seasons
    10 - Consecutive 40-win seasons (16 straight for program; '89-'04, plus '06)
    6 - Consecutive trips to the NCAA regional finals ('00-'05)
    5 - Annual Opening Night Dinners (since '02), featuring pre-sellout crowds of nearly 1,800 and keynote spearkers such as Tommy Lasorda, John Grisham and Roger Clemens.
    5 - Consecutive preseason top-20 rankings ('01-'05)
    4 - Seasons with 20-plus BIG EAST wins (no other school has won more than 18)
    4 - NCAA Regionals at Eck Stadium
    3.28 - Team in-season GPA during the 2006 spring semester
    3 - Former ND assistants who now are D-I head coaches
    2 - First-round draft picks
    1 - Recruit class ranking ('02 season)
    1 - College World Series team ('02)
    1 - National ranking in 2001 season
    1 - First team to receive the ND athletic department's award for community service excellence (in '06)