Who is Alabama baseball coach Rob Vaughn? Five things to know before the NCAA Tournament

Alabama baseball just completed its first season under new leadership.

After a turbulent 2023 season that ended with a loss in the super regionals, the Crimson Tide chose former Maryland coach Rob Vaughn to lead the program. In his first season at Alabama, Vaughn led the Crimson Tide to a 33-22 record that included 13 wins in a loaded Southeastern Conference, including series wins over top-ranked teams such as Tennessee and Arkansas.

Alabama enters its first NCAA Tournament under Vaughn as the No. 2 seed in the Tallahassee Regional. The Tide will take on No. 3 seed UCF on Friday, May 31, at 6 p.m. CT on ESPN+.

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Here are five things to know about Alabama baseball head coach Rob Vaughn before he leads the Crimson Tide into the NCAA Tournament:

Why did Alabama baseball hire Rob Vaughn?

Vaughn came to Tuscaloosa under highly unusual circumstances. The last head coach for Alabama, Brad Bohannon, was fired for cause late in the 2023 season after a gambling scandal. According to the NCAA's investigation into the scandal, Bohannon "knowingly provided insider information to an individual he knew to be engaged in betting on an Alabama baseball game." Bohannon conspired with another man to place a large bet on LSU after he had scratched Alabama's starting pitcher from the game but before he submitted that pitching change to LSU.

After Bohannon's firing, Alabama made pitching coach Jason Jackson the interim head coach to finish the 2023 season. Jackson guided the team to a regional host spot and Tuscaloosa Regional championship. Vaughn was officially announced as the 33rd head coach in Alabama baseball history on June 13, 2023, while Jackson was retained as the associate head coach and pitching coach.

Rob Vaughn playing experience

Vaughn attended Kansas State University, where he played catcher on the Wildcat baseball team from 2006-09. He was drafted in the 30th round of the 2009 MLB Draft by the Chicago White Sox and spent two years in the White Sox organization. In the minors, he played for the Bristol White Sox, Kannapolis Intimidators and the Great Falls Voyagers.

Rob Vaughn coaching experience

After two seasons in the White Sox organization, Vaughn returned to Kansas State as a volunteer assistant. In 2013, he became an assistant coach at the University of Maryland. By 2016, he was promoted to associate head coach, a position he held until becoming the head coach in 2018. Vaughn was the Maryland coach for five seasons before taking over at Alabama.

Rob Vaughn championship experience

Vaughn is no stranger to conference championships. He led Maryland to 40-plus win campaigns in 2022 and 2023, winning the Big Ten regular season both years. Maryland also won its first Big Ten Tournament in program history in 2023. The Terrapins made three consecutive NCAA regional appearances under Vaughn from 2021-23, including as a host in 2022, but never advanced to the super regionals round.

Last season, Vaughn and Maryland were eliminated in the Winston-Salem Regional by No. 1 seed Wake Forest, who went on to eliminate Alabama in the super regional round.

Rob Vaughn bio

Vaughn was born on July 7, 1987, in Humble, Texas, a suburban city located just outside of Houston. He and his wife, Kayleigh, have two sons, Wyatt and Beau.

May 11 2024; Tuscaloosa, AL, USA; Alabama head coach Rob Vaughn looks into the stands before the game at Sewell-Thomas Stadium Saturday. Alabama lost 6-3 as LSU evened the weekend series.
May 11 2024; Tuscaloosa, AL, USA; Alabama head coach Rob Vaughn looks into the stands before the game at Sewell-Thomas Stadium Saturday. Alabama lost 6-3 as LSU evened the weekend series.

This article originally appeared on The Tuscaloosa News: Alabama baseball: 5 things to know about Rob Vaughn before NCAA Tournament