Q&A with Tommy Nicholson
June 30, 2012
With the announcement of Tommy Nicholson being named assistant coach for the Texas Baseball program, TexasSports.com had a chance to catch up with the newest member of the coaching staff.
Nicholson spent the last two seasons (2011-12) as an assistant coach at Sacramento State, serving as the team's infield and hitting coach. In 2012, the Hornets batted .298 as a team with 30 home runs. Nicholson helped outfielder Rhys Hoskins earn freshman All-America honors this past season, as Hoskins hit .353 with 10 home runs, 44 runs scored and 53 RBI.
Prior to his stint at Sacramento State, Nicholson spent two seasons (2009-10) as a volunteer assistant coach at Texas where he worked with the infielders while serving as the first base coach for the Longhorns. The Longhorns posted a 50-16-1 mark and finished as runner-up at the College World Series in 2009, before registering a 50-13 record and advancing to NCAA Super Regional play in 2010. The Longhorns batted .286 in 2010 with 87 stolen bases and recorded a .980 fielding percentage, while the 2009 squad batted .288 as a team with 74 stolen bases and boasted a .976 fielding clip.
For his collegiate playing career, he missed only three starts as a second baseman during his three seasons (1998-2000) at Texas. Nicholson compiled a .327 career average at UT with 147 runs scored, 223 hits, 37 doubles, four triples, nine home runs, 114 RBI and 20 stolen bases. He was named the team's most valuable player in 1999 and 2000.
What will you bring to the table as a coach for the Texas program? I hope that the energy I bring to the park everyday will keep the guys excited to come to the yard everyday. I love teaching both hitting and infield play, I hope I can bring a work ethic that will rub off on the players.
How has your experience at Sacramento State better prepared you to return to Texas as an assistant coach? I can't say enough about head coach Reggie Christiansen. He has a great baseball mind and challenged me to get better everyday. He placed a lot of trust in me and allowed me to develop as a coach. He appointed me the recruiting coordinator, hitting coach, infield coach, as well as third base coach. There were many challenges along the way, both myself and our position players were in the process of getting better each day.
What gives you personal satisfaction as a coach? Watching a TEAM grow and achieve more than they ever thought possible brings a smile to my face.
What impact has Augie Garrido made on you as a player and coach? Augie has had an impact on me since I was 17 years old. He took a chance on an undersized infielder with very average tools. I wanted to do everything I could to prove them right. Coach Garrido is more prepared and pays more attention to details than any coach I ever played for. He has had a lot of different types of teams and is always evolving. It's no coincidence he has been able to have so much success over so many years.
What makes Austin feel like home to you? The people of Austin are unbelievable. I have a lot of really close friends that are almost like family. That makes it home to me.
Why should a player come to Texas? Texas is an amazing place where you can achieve greatness. Each individual knows what is most important to them. The University of Texas is tip top in every area I can think of.