After 31 years of coaching at the collegiate level, Pat Casey elected to not return to the dugout following Oregon State’s third College World Series, calling it quits as head coach in June 2018.
While the news came as a shock to Beaver Nation, Casey revealed in a recent episode of the Talkin’ Beavers podcast with Joslyn Tinkle, it was the right decision for him to step down.
“There’s times I feel like I want to be in the dugout, there’s times I’m thankful I’m not in the dugout,” Casey told Tinkle. “I had been a head coach for 31 years and when we got back from the World Series, there was a piece of me that just felt like I’m not sure I can do this at the same level with the same energy that I had done it before, and if I can’t, I’m not going to do it because that’s unfair to the players...
Casey was head coach at Oregon State for 24 years and compiled a 900-458-6 record in his role. The 2006 Coach of the Year was part of the groundswell that built Oregon State into one of the nation’s premier baseball programs. Ultimately, he led the Beavers to six World Series appearances, 12 NCAA Tournaments, and five conference championships.
Today, he serves as senior associate athletic director and special assistant to Director of Athletics, Scott Barnes. But that doesn’t mean he has shut the door completely on a potential return to coaching.
“I can’t tell you how many times I said I was going to come back, and how many times I said I wasn’t. So, who knows, you never know?” Casey explained. “I know we’re so fortunate to have guys who have played for me and they’re such great guys in the dugout now and this program’s going to continue to go, and I was blessed to get to coach at Oregon State, and I think it was the right time for me to walk away.
"Who knows? I don’t think I’ll say I’ll never coach again, but I can just tell you that I don’t go to bed at night thinking I should, or I shouldn’t right now, but who knows?”
To hear more from the legendary former Oregon State baseball coach on when he fell in love with baseball, what it was like to win the first College World Series Championship and this year's Beavers team, listen to the full Talkin’ Beavers podcast here.