UVU’s Smith takes University of Washington baseball job

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UVU baseball coach Eddie Smith (55) talks to his team at UCCU Ballpark on the campus of Utah Valley University in Orem, Utah Monday Feb. 7, 2022 (UVU Courtesy Photo)

The right offer came along and Eddie Smith is leaving Utah Valley baseball.

Smith, a native of Olympia, Wash., has announced that he is coming back to his home state and has accepted the head coach position at the University of Washington.

“I’m grateful for the time and service that Eddie has given to Utah Valley baseball,” UVU Director of Athletics Dr. Jared Sumsion said. “He, his staff, and our student-athletes achieved many successes. Under his leadership we’ve competed for WAC championships, had players advance to the professional ranks, and had tremendous success in the classroom. He recruited players who have been exceptional men, and they will undoubtedly change the world in a positive way. We wish Eddie and his family nothing but the best in Seattle.”

Smith replaces Jason Kelly, who left after two seasons at the helm of the Huskies to be pitching coach and associate head coach at Texas A&M. Kelly was 19-31-1 in 2024 (10-20 in Pac-12 play) and 54-51-1 overall. Washington will compete in the Big Ten Conference after leaving the now defunct Pac-12.

“I could not be more excited to be the head baseball coach at the University of Washington,” Smith said in a news release. “I want to thank Pat Chun and (UW baseball sport administrator) Jordan Betts for their trust and belief in me to lead these young men. This program offers everything a player could want or need for their development and the opportunity to win championships. It will be an exciting time to build Husky baseball as we enter the Big Ten and our program will work with a relentless pursuit toward winning championships. Go Dawgs!”

In his three seasons in Orem, Smith finished with an 81-90 overall record, which included a 24-game turnaround for a 34-24 finish in 2023. That team reached the program’s third conference championship game but fell one win short of their second regional appearance.

Under Smith in 2024, the Wolverines set many offensive records, including the most home runs in program history, hit batters, walks, and stolen bases.

During his tenure, eight players have gone on to sign professional contracts, including Casey Anderson, who was UVU’s highest draft pick in the D1 era when he went to the Arizona Diamondbacks in the 11th round in 2023.

Smith arrived at Utah Valley after serving as the hitting coach at LSU for two seasons. Prior to his time at LSU, Smith was the recruiting coordinator and hitting coach at Tulane from 2018-19. Smith arrived at Tulane after four seasons as the head coach at Lower Columbia College in Longview, Washington. Before Lower Columbia, Smith spent time as an assistant coach at Notre Dame, Santa Clara, and Virginia.

Associate head coach Nate Rasmussen will take over interim duties at Utah Valley until a permanent successor is announced. A national search has begun for the new head coach.



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