Houston Coaches' Road Tour Makes Second Stop
July 20, 2011
HOUSTON - Four University of Houston coaches joined administrators in greeting Cougar fans at the second stop of the Houston Coaches' Road Tour, Wednesday evening at Rajin Cajun on Westheimer. The coaches and administrators interacted with the standing-room only crowd and gave updates on the upcoming 2011-12 season.
Katina Jackson, Associate Athletics Director for Major Gifts, and James Nicas, Assistant Athletics Director for Development, opened the event with updates on several key issues, including encouraging news on football season ticket sales and progress on the new stadium project. Jackson also focused on the academic success, which saw the highest GPA for the spring semester in school history, as well as the most hours passed.
Fresh off an NCAA Super Regional appearance, head softball coach Kyla Holas followed and answered questions on how the Cougars will plan on replacing the loss of star hurlers Amanda Crabtree and Donna Bourgeois. "Bailey Watts returns after being the No. 1 for us in 2010 and Diedre Outon pitched a lot of innings for us last year, while Summer Groholski is an incoming freshman.
"We have a healthy squad, but several new faces, so we have a lot of work putting everything together, but hopefully it'll all work out for us."
Head baseball coach Todd Whitting followed with a surprise appearance, and updated the Cougar faithful on the new look of the squad for the upcoming season. "We have over 20 new players coming in, so it'll be similar to last fall with everyone learning new positions. I'm really excited to get going and I can't wait for summer to come to an end."
James Dickey, head men's basketball coach, was next to address the crowd, and broke down all of the players for the upcoming season, including 10 newcomers. "I'm disappointed we didn't win more games last year, but I'm so excited about the future. We've made tremendous progress.
"We have 12 players on our roster, and 11 of them our staff recruited over the past 15 months. I really like our players, who not only can really play, but are good people as well. I'm also happy to say we were able to keep our coaching staff intact, which I feel is the best staff in the country."
Assistant head football coach and special teams coordinator Tony Levine wrapped up the evening and kept Cougar fans laughing, as well as giving a breakdown of every position.
"Our kids and our staff are ready to go," said Levine. "It's been a great summer and I think the expectations for this season are where they need to be. They're probably even higher amongst the coaches."
The last stop of the Houston Coaches' Road Tour will take place on July 27 at Loggia (2248 Texas Dr., Sugar Land, 77479).