Dick Cooke is in his 22nd season as head coach of the Davidson Wildcats baseball program. He has also served as the Senior Men's Administrator for the past eight years.
No other coach in Davidson history has coached or won as many games as Cooke. During his tenure, Cooke has compiled a record of 402-658-1. He coached in his 1,000th game during the 2009 season.
Ten of Cooke's Davidson players have been selected in the Major League Baseball draft, including left-handed pitcher Chris Lamb (11th round, 346th overall by the Oakland A's) and right-handed pitcher Andy Bass (18th round, 570th overall by the Tampa Bay Rays) after the 2011 season. Freshman left fielder Forrest Brandt also earned All-SoCon Freshman Team honors as a highlight of the 2011 season.
In 2010, Cooke coached freshman third baseman Andrew Barna to Louisville Slugger Freshmen All-America honors, just the third freshman in Davidson history to be so honored. Barna was also named to the SoCon All-Freshman team after also earning SoCon Player of the Month and SoCon Player of the Week honors in February.
Rucker Taylor begins his first season as an assistant coach at Davidson
Taylor spent the last six seasons on the Samford coaching staff, serving as the outfield coach and assisting with hitting and the infielders. He was also responsible for coordinating the placement of players in summer leagues and opponent scouting, and was the staff alumni liaison. Taylor also hosted and coordinated numerous summer and fall tournaments at Samford and assisted with recruiting.
"I'd like to give thanks to God for this opportunity and thank head coach Dick Cooke and Director of Athletics Jim Murphy for the chance to be part of such a well-respected institution," said Taylor. "I am incredibly excited about the educational and athletic possibilities here at Davidson. I am looking forward to being a part of the development of the leaders of tomorrow, while competing in one of the best baseball conferences in the country."
This past season, Taylor helped lead the Bulldogs to a school-record 41 wins, as well as the program's first-ever Southern Conference title and NCAA Tournament bid. Samford also had seven players drafted in the Major League Baseball Draft off of the 2012 squad and two more players sign free agent contracts. Outfielder Brandon Miller was named an All-American and became the highest drafted player in Samford history, while Miller and outfielder Philip Ervin were both named all-conference along three other hitters.