The winningest coach in USF athletics history finds himself standing on deck, waiting for immortality to be delivered.
Bulls softball coach Ken Eriksen earned career victory No. 993 with Friday afternoon’s 3-1 victory against Tulsa to open a four-game home set against the Golden Hurricane. Barring an unforeseen collapse by his team (18-9, 8-1 American Athletic Conference), the USF alumnus and former Bulls baseball player will reach 1,000 at some point later this month.
The earliest he could hit the millennial mark? During a four-game series at Wichita State beginning April 23.
Eriksen would become only the 25th Division I softball coach to reach 1,000 victories, and only the second from a Florida school, according to NCAA records. Former FSU coach JoAnne Graf, who won 1,186 fastpitch games in a 25-season career with the Seminoles (1984-2008), leads the state.
Among active coaches, only 14 have reached the milestone. Stetson’s Frank Griffin (984) and Florida Atlantic’s Joan Joyce (980) are close behind Eriksen, but their teams currently have only six and seven victories this season, respectively.
The coach of the U.S. Olympic team that will seek a gold medal this summer in Tokyo, Eriksen, 60, owns a 993-511-1 mark in 24 seasons at his alma mater. His resume includes seven conference titles, 14 NCAA Tournament trips, and an appearance in the 2012 Women’s College World Series.
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