Fall Report: Louisiana

Fall Report

STARKVILLE, Miss. — Tragedy struck the Louisiana baseball program this summer, when longtime head coach Tony Robichaux died at age 57 after a heart attack. The Cajuns were devastated by the loss of the man who had led the program for 25 years and made an incredible impact on the lives of so many people — including Matt Deggs, who served as an assistant under Robichaux from 2012-14 before taking the head job at Sam Houston State.

So after mourning the loss of Robichaux, the Cajuns had to move forward, and they did so by hiring Deggs to take over for him. The homecoming has been “surreal,” as Deggs put it.

“You run all the gamut of emotions, from super, super proud and honored — I feel like it’s my duty and honor to take Coach’s torch and run with it. And on the other hand I’m grieving for the loss of one of my best friends,” Deggs said. “It’s very weird. Lot of up and down days. I can promise you this: I won’t let him down. It’s gonna take one step at a time. I’m in it for the long haul.”

Deggs was on staff for Louisiana’s 58-10 campaign in 2014, its best season since its run to Omaha in 2000. His breakneck offensive style – known as “The Pack” — played a huge part in that team’s success, and you can expect his future teams in Lafayette to play with that same thrilling style. The Cajuns will be ultra-aggressive on the basepaths, they’ll attack through a turbo bunting game that liberally uses the push, drag, squeeze and even the double-squeeze, and they’ll hit plenty of home runs. This year’s Cajuns aren’t as rich in talent as that 2014 team, but they still have a nice core to build around, and they’ll still apply plenty of pressure on opposing defenses. …

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