Fayetteville, Ark. — After two historic seasons, including back-to-back Southeastern Conference (SEC) regular-season championships and a 2022 SEC Softball Tournament title, the University of Arkansas softball head coach , Courtney Deifel, has signed a new contract that could keep her in third base practice at Bogle Park until 2030.
“The phenomenal success of our softball program is credited to many, including our student-athletes, assistant coaches and staff, however, it is unquestionably a tangible result of coach’s exceptional leadership. Courtney Deifel,” the vice-chancellor and director of Athletics Hunter said. Yurachek said. “Coach Deifel has proven himself to be one of the finest coaches in the nation and has established Razorback Softball as one of the premier collegiate softball programs within the Southeastern Conference and nationally. We We are thrilled that Coach Deifel will continue to lead our program for years to come as we compete for the SEC and NCAA Championships.
The five new–the one-year deal runs from July 1, 2022 through June 30, 2027 and includes a series of scheduled salary increases and up to two one-year deal extensions based on NCAA Tournament appearances. Additional incentive payments will be based on success in the SEC and NCAA Tournament and graduation of softball student-athletes.
“I cannot thank Hunter and the University of Arkansas enough for their continued confidence in me and my staff to lead this program,” said softball head coach Courtney Deifel. “I am incredibly proud of what we have built here and also honored by the opportunity to continue to be the head coach of the Arkansas Razorbacks. Our success is the result of the shared efforts of our student-athletes, coaches assistants, support staff, trustees, members of the Razorback Foundation, and supporters. I look forward to working together as we accomplish even more of our goals for many years to come. And finally, Arkansas is the home of our My boys are Arkansans, and it’s an amazing community for us to raise them.
In seven seasons in Fayetteville, Deifel orchestrated the Razorbacks’ return to the playoffs and guided the program to two SEC regular season championships, an SEC Tournament crown and five NCAA Tournament appearances on six occasions, including five consecutive berths from 2017. -22. The Hogs have qualified for the national tournament every year since 2017. Deifel led the program to its first NCAA Super Regional Tournament appearances in 2018, 2021 and 2022.
Since its first season in 2016, the Razorbacks have been ranked 69 times in the NFCA Coaches Poll after being ranked only once in program history. Nine of the program’s 10 NFCA All-American awards and 78 Easton/NFCA All-America Scholar-Athlete honors have been accrued under Deifel since 2016. With 238 career wins at Arkansas, Deifel is seven wins away from becoming head coach the winner of the program. .
In 2022, Deifel guided the Razorbacks to their most successful season in school history, collecting back-to-back SEC regular-season titles, headlined by the program’s first regular-season crown and first championship. of the program’s SEC tournament after shutting out Missouri, 4-0, in Gainesville, Fla., on May 13. Arkansas finished the season with the most single-season wins in program history and a 48–11 record, scoring a record .814 winning percentage. Arkansas finished SEC play with a 19-5 record, producing the Hogs’ second consecutive 19-win conference season. Against Missouri State on March 3, Deifel became only the second head coach in program history to reach 200 career wins.
The Hogs made their 11th NCAA Tournament appearance, earning the highest seed in the program (No. 4) and hosting their second consecutive Super Regional. The Razorbacks hosted the NCAA’s highest-attended regional and super-regional championships in 2022.
The Razorbacks picked up the SEC’s top 12 all-conference honors and a school-record five NFCA All-American nods to complete another huge playoff award. Arkansas became the first SEC program since 2006 to have four All-American first-team stars. Danielle Gibson (first team) became the program’s first two-time NFCA All-American while KB Sides (first team), Linnie Malkin (first team), Hannah Gammill (first team) and Chenise Delce (second team) won their first All- American honors.
For the first time in program history, all eight NFCA All-Region nominees earned spots on All-South Region teams. Deifel was named SEC Coach of the Year for the second consecutive season while KB Sides became the program’s first-ever SEC Player of the Year honor and Chenise Delce earned the second consecutive SEC Pitcher of the Year honor. of the Hogs after Mary Haff received the award. in 2021. Arkansas earned the league’s top 12 all-conference honors and eight NFCA All-Region honors to complete a huge crop of playoff accolades. The 2022 Coaching Staff was named NFCA South Region Staff of the Year for the second consecutive season.