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Jim TomanHead Coach
College: N.C. State, '85, '95
Start Date: 06/2007
Jim Toman enters his seventh year at Liberty after posting the highest NCAA Division I winning percentage (.619) during his first six years in Lynchburg of any head baseball coach in program history.
This past season, Toman guided the Flames to their first NCAA Regional final appearance in program history and their first Big South Championship since 2000. Toman's Flames won five straight games to capture the 2013 Big South Championship and gain a No. 3 seed in the NCAA Columbia, S.C. Regional, the highest seed for a Liberty team in school history, The Flames then defeated Clemson twice to make their first appearance in a regional final in the 40-year history of the program.
Liberty has posted the school's top two single-season win totals in program history during Toman's tenure. The 2010 Flames set the school record for wins with a 43-18 campaign, while in 2012, Liberty finished the year with a 41-19 record.
The Flames have won 35 or more games in five of his six seasons at Liberty and have averaged 37 wins per season, the most of any head coach in program history. The Flames have notched a 223-137-1 overall record during his six seasons on Liberty Mountain and have also posted a 95-54 Big South mark over the span. His .638 conference winning percentage is also the best of any head coach in program history.
During his coaching career, Toman has been a part of 15 NCAA Regional teams, seven NCAA Super Regional teams and three College World Series teams.
Last season, Liberty became only the second fifth seed in Big South history to win the conference title. The Flames posted a 36-29 overall record and a 13-11 mark in Big South play, finishing in third place in the conference's North Division and fifth overall.
Once again, pitching and defense continued to be a theme of Liberty under Toman. The Flames set a new school record by pitching 567 1/3 innings. In addition, Liberty had a fielding percentage of .972 while playing the most games in a season in program history. Led by Johnny Bench Watch list member Trey Wimmer, Flames' opponents had only 51 percent stolen base success rate in 2013 and swiped 27 bases, the fewest stolen bases allowed by Liberty in the past nine years.
Toman saw four Flames taken during the 2013 Major League Baseball Draft, as outfielder Ryan Cordell, Wimmer and pitchers Josh Richardson and Danny Grauer were selected. In 2012, the Flames posted their second 40-plus win season in a three-year span under Toman and set school records for team ERA, shutouts and fielding percentage. Liberty pitchers recorded a 3.04 team ERA, ranking 15th nationally. In addition, the Flames set a Big South and school record with 11 shutouts.
Defensively, Liberty finished the year with a school record .975 fielding percentage and gave up 217 runs, the fewest by a Flames team since allowing 209 in 1991. Liberty finished the season tied for 12th in the country in runs allowed per game (3.4 runs/games).
Toman saw first baseman Alex Close named a Freshman All-American by both Collegiate Baseball and the NCBWA, along with outfielder Ian Parmley and pitchers John Niggli and Blake Forslund drafted in the 2012 Major League Baseball Draft.
In 2011, Toman saw seven players from his Flames squad selected during the Major League Baseball Draft, the most players chosen in a single draft in the 40-year history of the program. The number tied the 2007 and 2010 Coastal Carolina squads for the Big South Conference record for players picked in a single draft.
Liberty had its best season under Toman in 2010, posting a school record for wins in a single season with a 43-18 record. At the time, it was only the second 40-win campaign in the history of the program. The team's ledger was boosted by a 21-8 road mark, the nation's 10th best road record in 2010.
Also, the Flames recorded a 19-7 mark in Big South play, eclipsing its record of the previous season for most league victories by the school since joining the conference in 1992.
On May 2, 2010, Toman recorded his 100th career victory, as the Flames defeated Gardner-Webb, 10-7, at Worthington Stadium. The sixth coach in program history, Toman became the fastest Liberty baseball head coach to amass the milestone, doing so in 160 games.
The Flames had their best year at the plate during Toman's tenure in 2010. Liberty hit .318 and scored 691 runs, the second-best total in each category over the past 16 years. Third baseman Tyler Bream set a school record with 96 hits in a single campaign, while second baseman P.J. Jimenez and outfielder Curran Redal also recorded 90 hits during the year.
The Liberty relief corps also enjoyed a strong season, recording 16 saves, the second most in program history. Only the 2000 Flames team had more, posting 18 saves.
In 2009 the Liberty pitching staff set a new season strikeout record, fanning 508 opposing batters during the year. The Flames' strikeout total led the Big South Conference and their 8.2 strikeouts per nine innings ranked 22nd nationally at season's end.
Also, Liberty set a new fielding standard in 2009, committing the fewest errors, 53, in team history. The 2009 team's fielding percentage ranked 16th in the country. From that infield, third baseman Tyler Bream was named a Freshman All-American by the Collegiate Baseball News.
Toman was named the sixth head coach in the history of the Liberty Baseball program in June 2007, after 11 seasons as the senior member of Ray Tanner's coaching staff at South Carolina. Toman worked a total of 18 years alongside Tanner, dating back to the 1990 season at N.C. State.
During his time at South Carolina, Toman served as recruiting coordinator and coached the catchers. Known as one of the top recruiters in college baseball, the 25-year college coaching veteran was named the 2002 Baseball America/American Baseball Coaches Association Assistant Coach of the Year. Before joining the Gamecock staff in 1996, Toman served under Tanner for seven years at N.C. State.
Toman has recruited 15 top 25 classes, including all 11 of his seasons at South Carolina. During his final years with the Gamecocks, he recruited many of the players who were members of the 2010 and 2011 South Carolina National Championship teams. From 2003-2006, three of the four Gamecock recruiting classes were ranked first in the nation by Collegiate Baseball. Toman's 2003, 2005 and 2006 classes were named the top recruiting classes by the publication.
The 2004 South Carolina recruiting class was ranked ninth in the nation by Baseball America and Collegiate Baseball, while his 2002 class was selected eighth. The 2001 Gamecock class was ranked 10th and the 2000 class eighth best by Collegiate Baseball. The 1997 South Carolina class was ranked 17th and the 1998 and 1999 classes were both ranked 11th.
During his time on the staff in Columbia, S.C., Toman and the Gamecocks made nine NCAA Regional appearances, including eight straight between 2000 and 2007, and three consecutive trips to the College World Series (2002-04). Add in his seven seasons at N.C. State, and Toman has helped lead 15 teams to NCAA Regional appearances.
In addition, South Carolina posted eight straight seasons of 40 or more wins with Toman on the Gamecock coaching staff. During Toman's 11 seasons at South Carolina, he helped the Gamecocks to a combined 500-220 record (.694).
He was a four-year letterwinner at N.C. State from 1981-84, and served as team captain of the Wolfpack his junior and senior seasons. The highlight of his career as a player came in the 1984 Atlantic Coast Conference tournament, when he set tournament records for home runs (4), doubles (4) and total bases (25) and was named to the all-tournament team.
Toman earned a Bachelor of Science degree in vocational industrial education from N.C. State in 1985 and graduated as the top student in the vocational industrial education curriculum. He received a Master of Science degree in sport management from N.C. State in 1995 with a 4.0 grade-point average.
Upon graduation, Toman entered the coaching profession as an assistant at Richmond County High School in Rockingham, N.C. While working with one of the top high school baseball programs in North Carolina for two years, he also served as head wrestling coach and as an assistant football coach. He then moved to Atlantic Community High School in Del Ray Beach, Fla., where he spent a year as an assistant for baseball.
Toman moved into the collegiate coaching ranks in 1989 as an assistant at Florida International for one year. At Florida International, he was responsible for the weight program, worked with the squad's catchers and coached first base. Toman joined the N.C. State staff before the 1990 season.
Toman also spent three summers as an assistant coach with the Brewster Whitecaps of the Cape Cod League.
A native of Monroeville, Pa., Toman lives in Forest, Va. He and his wife, the former Ashley McLaughlin, have three children - Caroline (16), Charlie Mac (13), and Tucker (10). He is a member of the Thomas Road Baptist Church.