Dave Serrano is pushing all the right buttons. (CSUN photo)

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Under The Radar: Reinvented Serrano Making Waves With Rejuvenated CSUN

Under The Radar

Dave Serrano feels like a new man and coach, and Cal State Northridge, so far this spring, looks like a new program.

Serrano was one of the hottest names in college baseball a few seasons ago. He guided UC Irvine to the College World Series before doing the same at Cal State Fullerton. Then, he tried his hand in the rugged Southeastern Conference at Tennessee — his dream job.

Serrano was going to take his West Coast style of play and coaching to the Deep South, and he was going to win big in doing so, turning the Volunteers into a premier program and out of the ashes.

Wrong.

The long-time head coach deterred away from his roots and from what worked. And in just six seasons, he transformed from the hottest name in our sport to someone looking for a new role in the sport. After a season as the pitching coach at West Virginia in 2018, Serrano decided that wasn’t for him. He wanted to try his hand at something else — being a media member.

During his one spring at Baseball America, Serrano learned more about college baseball and himself than he had in years. It was an eye-opening experience, and one that led him to chase down his roots out on the West Coast.

It led him to suddenly rejuvenated Cal State Northridge, which is off to its best start since 1993 with a 7-0 record. That also happened to be one of five years the Matadors reached the NCAA tournament.

“My year off was probably the best thing that has ever happened in my career, and that’s saying something because some great things have happened in my career,” Serrano said. “It was a great time for me to evolve as a coach and person.

 

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