Information from the Arizona media relations department contributed to this report:
Arizona coach Chip Hale has added renowned recruiter Trip Couch to is new coaching staff.
Couch joins the Wildcats following a four-year stint at South Carolina, where he served as the Gamecocks assistant coach and recruiting coordinator. While in Columbia he helped the program advance to the postseason twice in 2018 and 2021, including a run to the final game of an NCAA Super Regional in 2018.
“I am thrilled to add Trip Couch, an experienced college coach and praised national recruiter, to our coaching staff,” Hale said in a statement released Thursday. “It was crucial we add a relentless and successful recruiter to further the goals of the program we’re building, and coach Couch is the perfect person to fill that role. He will make an immediate impact on our current student-athletes and add to our roster by attracting the top talent in the country to join us in Tucson.
“With the addition of coach Couch, we are building a world-class coaching staff that will help us develop successful players and a championship culture.”
As the Gamecocks recruiting coordinator, Couch helped build the program’s 2020 recruiting class that earned consensus Top 10 praise and a No. 4 national ranking from Perfect Game.
Hale said on the day of his introductory press conference last week that the assistants he brings in, “We hope they get head coaching jobs.”
“That’s part of this business, but this guy’s not leaving,” Hale said, talking about himself. “This guy’s staying for as long as he wants to coach and that’s a long time. This is my destination.”
Couch also used a similar phrase in the statement released by Arizona that “Tucson is a destination for baseball.”
Among the standout players developed by Couch at South Carolina is two-time All-American and 2021 Dick Howser Trophy semifinalist, Wes Clarke. During his tenure in Columbia, the Gamecocks had nine players selected in the Major League Baseball Draft.
“I am privileged to join a historic program here at Arizona,” Couch said. “I met coach Hale at Hi Corbett Field in 1999 with USA Baseball and had the privilege to work alongside some legendary Wildcats in Jerry Kindall, Jim Wing, and Bill Kinneberg. This is a tremendous opportunity for me to return to the Tucson community and build on the legacy those men left for us.
“We are ready to get to work building a successful, sustainable program with the goal of developing champions on the field and off. Tucson is a destination for baseball, and I am excited to hit the recruiting trail with that message and the Block A on my chest. With the help of coach Hale and (pitching) coach (Dave) Lawn I know this staff can make Omaha a regular destination for the Wildcats.”
Prior to his time with South Carolina, coach Couch spent seven seasons at Houston in his second stint with the Cougars. From 2011-17 he helped guide Houston to two AAC Championships, three NCAA Regional appearances, two of which the program hosted, and one trip to an NCAA Super Regional in 2014.
Couch worked with the Cougars outfielders and catchers while assisting head coach Todd Whiting with the coordination of the offense.
Under his direction, the Cougars produced a pair of All-American position players, including utility player Jake Scheiner, who was honored as the program’s first consensus All-American since 2006. Houston also picked up three Freshman All-Americans and 19 All-Conference honorees, and one AAC Player of the Year with coach Couch’s guidance.
In addition to his first stint with Houston from 1995-2000, Couch has also served as an assistant coach with Texas (2001) and Louisiana-Lafayette (1991-92).
Throughout his coaching career he has made 11 NCAA Regional appearances, three NCAA Super Regional appearances, guided players to 12 All-America selections, and developed 37 position players who went on to become MLB Draft picks.
Prior to joining the Houston staff in 1995, Couch served as the marketing and promotions coordinator for the Cougar baseball and football programs in 1994. He also served as a student assistant and bullpen catcher for the Cougars from 1987-1990. Couch was a member of the Team USA coaching staff in 1999.
He is a 1991 graduate of Louisiana-Lafayette, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in Restaurant Administration.
Couch is joined in Tucson by his wife, Tiffany. They have two children, Chandler Gray and Kendall Blair.
TRIP COUCH COACHING HISTORY
- 2018-21: South Carolina, Assistant Coach/Recruiting Coordinator
- 2011-17: Houston, Assistant Coach/Recruiting Coordinator
- 2002-10: MLB Arizona Diamondbacks, Scout
- 2001: Texas, Assistant Coach
- 1995-2000: Houston, Assistant Coach
- 1991-92: Louisiana-Lafayette, Assistant Coach
TRIP COUCH CAREER HIGHLIGHTS
- 11 NCAA Regional appearances
- 3 NCAA Super Regional appearances
- Led position players to 12 All-America selections
- Coached 37 position players who became MLB Draft selections
NCAA POSTSEASON HISTORY
- 2021 NCAA Regional (South Carolina)
- 2018 NCAA Super Regional (South Carolina)
- 2018 NCAA Regional (South Carolina)
- 2017 NCAA Regional (Houston)
- 2015 NCAA Regional (Houston)
- 2014 NCAA Super Regional (Houston)
- 2014 NCAA Regional (Houston)
- 2001 NCAA Regional (Texas)
- 2000 NCAA Super Regional (Houston)
- 2000 NCAA Regional (Houston)
- 1999 NCAA Regional (Houston)
- 1997 NCAA Regional (Houston)
- 1992 NCAA Regional (Louisiana-Lafayette)
- 1991 NCAA Regional (Louisiana-Lafayette)