South Carolina baseball coach Chad Holbrook has had conversations with athletics director Ray Tanner since it was announced that the Gamecocks will not be a part of the NCAA tournament for the second time in three years.
However, USC’s fifth-year head coach has not been assured he will continue to run the program.
Holbrook expects that topic, as well as others, to be discussed when Tanner returns from the SEC spring meetings in Destin. Tanner is expected to be in Florida until the end of the week.
“We haven’t had that conversation. We’ll have that conversation, I’m sure, in a short period of time when we meet and talk about the year,” Holbrook said Tuesday when asked if he’s been told he’ll be back. “We’ve communicated, as with any season. We’ll personally talk and get together when the time is right. After every season, I’ll sit down with coach Tanner, and we’ll talk about a number of different things. I would assume we’re going to do that really soon.”
The Gamecocks finished the season 35-25 after being ranked in the top five in the preseason.
South Carolina’s year was predicted to end in Omaha, but USC was not included in the 64-team postseason field.
Holbrook is aware of the expectations at South Carolina and that his team fell well short of reaching them. Still, he believes USC can be successful with him as the leader of the program.
“I understand we need to get to the College World Series. I’m honored to have worn that jersey and honored to continue to wear that jersey,” he said. “I wish some things had gone differently for us this year, and I wish we had all of our team able to compete on a day-to-day basis. As far as my coaching record and what I’ve been able to accomplish, I feel good about who I am and what I’ve done for this university and I feel good about us going forward for the baseball program and Chad Holbrook.”
No matter what decision is made regarding Holbrook’s future, he said he expects to remain close friends with Tanner.
The two had a close bond before Holbrook left North Carolina to work under Tanner in Columbia.
That bond has continued to grow with Tanner serving as Holbrook’s boss, first as the head coach with Holbrook being an assistant and now with Tanner being the AD and Holbrook being the head baseball coach.
“There’s not a person in the world that I think more of. There’s not a person in the world that means more to me,” Holbrook said. “I know he holds me in high regard, and I hold him in high regard. We’ll have conversations. I’ll do whatever he asks me to do, and I’ll love that guy until the day I die.
“It’s up to coach Tanner. Coach Tanner is the athletic director here. He’s going to make decisions based on what he thinks are best for South Carolina and this baseball program going forward. I totally respect that. That’s what he’s paid to do. Coach Tanner and I have a deep relationship, and we’re going to have a deep relationship whether I’m the head coach at South Carolina or not.”