Anderson to stay, fight for U baseball after losing Georgia

Brian Hall

John Anderson will continue to battle the opposition – and University administration – as head coach of the Minnesota baseball team.

Amid a fight for a new facility and the search for a new contract, Anderson interviewed last week for the head coaching position at the University of Georgia.

Anderson was one of four coaches being considered for the position, a spot filled by Bulldogs assistant coach David Perno last Friday. Anderson said he did not use the Georgia position as a bargaining chip.

“I looked at Georgia and Minnesota as different opportunities,” Anderson said. “It doesn’t mean one is better than the other, they are just different. There’s a big difference between a program in the Sun Belt and one in the North.”

Anderson looks to the future and questions the commitment of the athletics administration. He is looking for a definition of what they want and the future of his program.

Without addressing the aging Siebert Field, Anderson doesn’t see Minnesota having the same success it has enjoyed the past 30 years.

In his 20 seasons, Anderson has become the all-time winningest coach in school history. He’s led the Gophers to the NCAA tournament 12 times.

“That is a big issue for me,” Anderson said. “If I sign a long-term agreement with the University, I will fulfill it. But I would like to know where we are headed before I sign.”

Yet without a long-term deal, Anderson’s departure from Minnesota remains a possibility.

“Anybody would be foolish to completely close the door to any possibility,” Anderson said. “But it would have to be pretty special and pretty unique. (Georgia) was one of those circumstances.”

Men’s athletics director Tom Moe said talks concerning the facility and overall welfare of the baseball program will continue. Yet, the possibility of Anderson’s departure will not speed the process.

“The fact he was talking to Georgia will have nothing to do with how we approach his contract and the stadium issue,” Moe said.

Anderson said he will continue the fight to make Minnesota a national power, a battle being played out on several fronts.

 

Brian Hall welcomes comments at [email protected].