An ‘Irish goodbye’ to Link Jarrett?

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If you haven’t paid attention, Notre Dame athletics are a proud bunch that are successful in just about every sport they play.  However, the bar has been raised significantly in one of those sports in recent years.

From their first year as an ACC member school in 2014 through 2019, Notre Dame went just 55-93 in conference play in baseball.

College World Series? That was beyond a dream as the Irish finished the regular season of conference play higher than tenth place just once in that stretch.

Then a head coach by the name of Link Jarrett was hired out of UNC Greensboro where he won over 30 games in each of his final four seasons.

Jarrett made an immediate impact on Notre Dame as the Irish got off to a hot 11-2 start including a sweep at North Carolina before the pandemic wiped away the entire rest of the season.

A year later Jarrett guided that same Notre Dame squad within one win of a College World Series appearance before falling to the eventual champions in three games at Mississippi State.

This past season speaks for itself as Notre Dame and Jarrett completed one of the biggest upsets in school history in beating the unbeatable Tennessee squad in three games, earning a trip to Omaha and the College World Series for just the third time in program history.

Jarrett, who was a candidate for the LSU opening last year is the clear wish for Florida State who is in search of a new head coach.  The Seminoles have appeared in the second most NCAA baseball tournaments of all-time and reached Omaha an absurd 23 times.

They’ve never won it all however and with a rare job opening in Tallahassee, it’s easy to see why Jarrett, a former Seminoles shortstop who appeared in three of the College World Series himself, is the top candidate for the job.

I won’t pretend to know if Jarrett is going to ultimately take the Florida State job or not but it’s hard to imagine him staying at Notre Dame when the place that is reaching out not only presents an easier path to winning big but is also a place he called home for years.

Just like when Paul Mainieri left Notre Dame for LSU after guiding the Irish to Omaha, Jarrett certainly will have that opportunity.

If he does ultimately take the job which I won’t pretend to have any actual inside information on, Jarrett’s Irish goodbye should be celebrated for him putting Notre Dame baseball back on the map and doing what is truly best for him and his career.

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Notre Dame baseball NCAA tournament history