2002 Bulldog Baseball Coaching Staff
Andy Rushing is now in his fourteenth season as head coach of the Union Bulldogs. Last season, Rushing and the Bulldogs finished with a 34-23 record and a second place finish in the TranSouth Conference regular season and tournament. He participated in his second consecutive regional tournament and his third in the last four seasons. Rushing, a 1976 graduate of Union University, has put together eight consecutive 30-win seasons and has two 40-win seasons in the past four years. Last season, Rushing earned his 500th career victory on March 17 as his Bulldogs defeated Lipscomb University. Rushing's squad enters the 2002 season at the No. 24 spot in the NAIA preseason polls. He hopes to have the Bulldogs ready for another NAIA postseason run to the regional tournament and to qualify for the NAIA World Series, the national tournament event which is qualifies the fewest participants in the NAIA.
Rushing began his coaching career at South Side High School in Jackson. There he won a pair of district championships and compiled a 59-34 record. Rushing then turned his attention to the collegiate level by serving as head coach for four years at Lambuth College. While at Lambuth, Rushing was named the 1987 TCAC Coach of the Year while leading the Eagles to a school record 27 victories and a first ever playoff appearance.
As a player at Union, Rushing was named the Most Valuable Player in 1976 while batting .378 and earned his third Outstanding Defensive Player award. During his playing career at Union, Rushing played all nine positions, but found his talents best suited the catching spot. Rushing served as Union's team captain for two seasons before heading to Memphis State University where he received a master's degree in 1980.
Rushing has compiled a 16-year coaching record of 525 wins and 371 losses (59%), earning his 500th career win in a double-header sweep over Lipscomb University on March 17, 2001. His 13-year Union record is 441-273 (62%). Rushing has been named TCAC Coach of the Year twice (1987, 1995), NCCAA MidEast Region Coach of the Year (1998), TranSouth Coach of the Year (2000), NAIA Region Coach of the Year (2000), ABCA Region Coach of the Year (2000), and has led the Bulldogs to one conference championship and one conference co-championship, five district tournaments, and five regional tournaments. He has served as Chairman of the Conference Baseball Committee for nine years.
He is married to the former Susan Clark and has three children, Amy, Jennifer, and Kelly.
Brent Fronabarger is now in his fifth season as assistant coach for the Bulldogs. Fronabarger spent the 1996 season at Huntingdon High School where he helped coach the Mustangs in both football and baseball. Fronabarger, a 1996 graduate of Union University, has shared his knowledge of pitching to Union's staff as they look to remain on of the top teams in conference.
Fronabarger, the 1995 Tennessee Collegiate Athletic Conference Player of the Year, holds the school records for Most Victories in a Season (13), Most Victories in a Career (33), Most Strikeouts in a Career (306), and Most Innings in a Season (117.2). In 1995, Fronabarger led the team with the lowest earned run average (1.97) and had a incredible 11-2 record.
Brent received a Bachelor of Science in physical education and health from Union in 1995 and received a Master of Education degree from Union in 1998. He is married to the former Sandy Cothran.
Graduate Assistant Coach
Danny Giles is back for his second season as graduate assistant for the Bulldogs. Giles spent the 1999 and 2000 seasons at the starting second basemen for the Bulldogs. During his two seasons with Union, Giles hit .292 with 30 doubles, 11 homeruns, and 106 RBI's. He was selected second team All-Conference in 2000. Giles played his high school baseball at North Side High School as well as basketball and track. He was named Player of the Year at North Side during his junior and senior seasons. Giles was drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the 30th round on the 1996 Amateur Baseball draft. Danny attended the University of Arkansas where in 1997, he started 31 games as their shortstop. After his sophomore season, he transferred to Union to finish out his college career.
Graduate Assistant Coach
Chuck Cooper is in his first season as part of the Bulldog coaching staff. He joined up with Union in the summer of 2001 as he helped with the summer camps. Cooper is currently enrolled in graduate classes at Union in Education.
Cooper is a 2001 graduate of Freed-Hardeman University Cum Laude with a major in Physical Education and a minor in Biology. He lettered three years in baseball as a catcher and was a student assistant coach for one season. In 1997, Cooper graduated from Oxford High School in Oxford, Mississippi where he lettered in baseball, football, and track.
In June of 2001, Chuck married the former Dawn Holmes of Jackson and they currently reside in Jackson.