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Jason MurrayAssistant Coach
College: Ball State '98
Start Date: 08/2010
Entering his fifth year at Liberty, Jason Murray serves as an assistant coach and the team's recruiting coordinator on head coach Jim Toman's staff. He also provides infield instruction, assists with hitting instruction and serves as the team's third base coach during games.
Murray is no stranger in Big South Conference baseball circles, having also served two assistant coaching stints at Winthrop and leading the Charleston Southern program as its head coach for four years from 2005-08.
This past season, Murray helped guide the Flames to their first NCAA Regional final appearance in program history and their first Big South Championship since 2000. Liberty 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 posted a .972 fielding percentage in 2013, three points lower than the school record set the year before. Murray had a hand in that production, tutoring freshmen infielders Jake Kimble at third base and Dalton Britt at shortstop.
n addition, Murray helped in the development of two-way standout Ashton Perritt in 2013. Perritt hit .343, scored 34 runs and stole 18 bases after taking over the leadoff position in the Liberty batting order a quarter of the way through the season. The sophomore outfielder proved to be one of the key catalysts in the Flames' Big South title run, earning tournament MVP honors.
Big South first team catcher Trey Wimmer and outfielder Ryan Cordell were two of Liberty's four 2013 Major Baseball Draft selections, who received direction from Murray.
In two of his first three years on the Flames staff, Liberty won 40 or more games in season. In 2012, the Flames posted a 41-19 record, as Murray's infielders set a program record with a .975 fielding percentage. Liberty committed 53 errors and turned 60 double plays in 60 games.
Meanwhile, under Murray's guidance first baseman Alex Close was named a 2012 Freshman All-America and the Big South Freshman of the Year, while setting a new conference freshman season record with 14 home runs.
During the 2011 season, Murray assisted in helping Liberty hitters make an adjustment to the new BBCOR bats. Infielders Tyler Bream and Matt Williams and catcher Casey Rasmus were three of the program and conference record seven Flames selected in the 2011 Major League Draft, who received guidance from Murray.
Liberty hitters and infielders put together strong campaigns with Murray's assistance in his first year on the Flames staff. Liberty posted a school-record 43 wins, hitting .318 and scoring 691 runs, the second-best total in each category over the past 16 years. Third baseman Tyler Bream set the school record with 96 hits during the season, while second baseman P.J. Jimenez and outfielder Curran Redal, also recorded at 90 hits each during the year.
In addition, the Flames recorded a .971 fielding percentage, the best in the Big South Conference, and turned 62 double plays, finishing the year 19th nationally in the category.
Before coming to Liberty, Murray served as an assistant coach for the second time under Joe Hudak at Winthrop in 2009. He assisted with positional player development for the Eagles, who recorded a 35-25 overall mark and finished in second place in the Big South standings with an 18-9 mark. He saw two players under his guidance, John Murrian (Detrioit Tigers) and Kevin Nolan (Toronto Blue Jays), chosen in the 2009 MLB Draft and sign professional contracts. Murray also assisted with on-campus recruiting, player academic progress and field maintenance and was director of the team's youth hitting school.
From 2005-08, Murray was the head coach at Charleston Southern, where he recorded the fourth highest win total in school history with an 82-136 mark. In his four years at the school, Murray led the Buccaneers to several accomplishments both on and off the field. On the field, three players were selected Freshmen All-Americans, six were named all-conference players and one received conference academic team honors. Off the field, he saw his team record a 3.0 GPA for the first time in eight years in 2006 and receive the athletic department's 2007 and 2008 Athletic Team Community Service Award.
During the 2008 season, Murray's Buccaneers hit .297, the highest batting average by a Charleston Southern team in 13 years. In addition, pitcher Payton Tweddale became the program's career and single season saves leader and outfielder Justin Fyle became the school's single season hits leader.
In his first season with the Buccaneers in 2005, the pitching staff had its lowest ERA in five years. The staff included pitcher Bobby Parnell, who currently plays for the New York Mets.
Murray was an assistant coach at Michigan under head coach Rich Maloney from 2003-04, serving as the program's recruiting coordinator and coaching the outfielders. In each of his two seasons in Ann Arbor, the Wolverines posted 30 or more wins. Three players under his guidance, Jake Fox (Chicago Cubs), J.D. Roberts (Cincinnati Reds) and Chris Getz (Chicago White Sox) were selected in the MLB Draft. Fox, an All-American in 2004, played in the majors for the Chicago Cubs, Oakland A's and Baltimore Orioles. Getz currently plays second base for the Kansas City Royals.
In 2002, Murray was a volunteer assistant coach on head coach Pat McMahon's staff at Florida. The Gators went 46-19 and hosted a NCAA Regional, breaking 45 school records. Murray served as the team's first base coach and assisted in on-campus recruiting. A record eight players from that team were taken in the MLB Draft. Three players from the squad were named All-Americans.
Murray served as an assistant coach at Winthrop in 2001, as the Eagles posted a 48-16-1 record and participated in the East Carolina NCAA Regional. Murray coached first base, directed weight training, oversaw field maintenance and assisted in recruiting. Three players from that squad were named to the Big South all-conference team, with one being drafted in the MLB Draft.
Murray got his start in coaching, as a student assistant coach for his alma mater Ball State in 1998. He served as a bench coach for the 39-18 Mid-American Conference (MAC) Western Division Champions.
Murray graduated from Ball State in 1998 with a Bachelor of Science degree in elementary education. In 1997, he was named the shortstop for the American Baseball Coaches Association All-Region team and the All-MAC first team. The Cardinals became the first Ball State team to post a 40-win season that year, with a 40-19 mark. Murray ranked 20th in the country with a .425 batting average and had 20 doubles, which ranked second on the Cardinals' all-time single-season upon graduation.
A native of Bluffton, Ind., Murray is married to the former Mindy Curtis. The couple lives in Lynchburg.