OXFORD, Ohio – Miami University head softball coach Clarisa Crowell announced the hiring of Justin Shults Thursday as a new assistant coach. Shults comes to Miami from Southwestern Oklahoma State, where he spent the past two years as an assistant coach.
“I am very excited to add Justin to our coaching staff, and I would like to welcome him to our RedHawk family,” said Crowell. “First and foremost Justin is a genuine person, and he is very passionate about coaching. He was a standout baseball player, but he has also been around the game of fastpitch his entire life. As a former baseball player and private instructor for softball, Justin brings a wealth of knowledge as a hitting coach. He has also worked alongside of Oklahoma's hitting coach, Tripp MacKay, who is one of the best hitting coaches in the country. I am confident that Justin will help us to improve both offensively and defensively.”
While with the Lady Bulldogs, Shults assisted with all aspects of the team. He handled recruiting, hitting instruction, the outfielders and administrative work. He helped six different players earn spots on the All-Great American Conference Team in his two seasons there.
Shults also spent time around the University of Oklahoma softball team, where his sister Jessica Shults helped lead the Sooners to the national championship as a senior in 2013. He worked several camps with the highly touted Oklahoma coaching staff, led by head coach Patty Gasso.
“Justin Shults comes from a great family of athletes and coaches and has been around the sports of softball and baseball his whole life,” said Gasso. “He’s worked camps for us in the past and has done an exceptional job working with the female athletes. I’m very excited for this opportunity for Justin to work with Coach Crowell. I think they will take the RedHawks and make some noise in both the MAC and the NCAA.”
Shults was a highly decorated baseball player at UC Riverside, earning All-American and All-Region honors as a junior in 2010. He was a two-time All-Big West selection. Shults was drafted in the 46th round by the Houston Astros and played in their minor league organization in 2011, splitting time between first base and the outfield.
“I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to join the Miami family,” said Shults. “I would like to extend a thank you to Clarisa Crowell, Brittany Lastrapes and the entire RedHawk athletic department for their kindness on my visit to Oxford, and for providing me with this opportunity. I couldn't be happier to start working with Clarisa and Brittany, because they both know what it takes to be one of the top teams in the country. I'm really looking forward to working with the players, and I can't wait for this season to get underway.”
The fall exhibition season begins on Sept. 14 when the RedHawks travel to Indianapolis to face Evansville at 11 a.m. and Indiana at 1 p.m.