Oct. 15, 2013
Meet Longwood's Brian McCullough
By Sean Ryan
a legend never is easy. At Longwood, Brian McCullough is up for
McCullough replaces Buddy Bolding, who built the
Lancers program from scratch and retired after 35 years and more
than 950 wins. The only coach Longwood has known until now,
Bolding guided the program from Division III to Division II to
Division I Independent to its current membership in the Big
South Conference. He led the Lancers to six Division II tourney
appearances, including two trips to the Division II College
McCullough, 28, wasn’t even born when Bolding
started at Longwood but got plenty of experience under the
former coach – he went 20-14 with a 3.56 ERA in 329 innings
(school record) and 258 strikeouts (school record) playing for
Bolding and spent the past four years as an assistant at
Longwood. Most recently, he was the recruiting coordinator and
First Inning - You’re replacing a legend in Buddy
Bolding. How daunting is that?
It’s a great honor to be replacing someone with
his success and experience. Longwood baseball has only had one
coach in its 35-year history, so to have the opportunity to lead
the program into the future is going to be amazing.
Second Inning - What are some of the most
important things you’ve learned coaching under Bolding?
I have learned that there is no substitute for
hard work and sacrifice to become the best player and person you
can become. He also taught me that you build a program with
quality people, and I want to continue to keep in contact with
our past alumni and players during this exciting time in
Third Inning - How was playing for Bolding
similar to coaching with him? How was it different?
Coach made me work for everything that I earned
as a player and he was no different as my boss. Before being
given the reins to certain aspects of the program, I had to
prove to him that I could do the job not only well, but also to
his standard, and I thank him for that.
Fourth Inning - Aside from age, what are some
differences that you’ll bring to the Lancers?
Last year, Coach began to give me more freedom to
set up the program to prepare us for the Big South so that this
year would not be a big difference in the routine for our
players and coaching staff. We were able to hit the ground
running this fall because of this and we have not changed much
from last year.
Fifth Inning - At 28, you’re one of the youngest
head coaches in the country. How does that help you and how
might that hurt you?
I am a firm believer in getting your work in
every day and I try to pass this along to our players through
example by showing up every day and working hard with them.
Sixth Inning - How has the move to the Big South
changed things for Longwood?
The move has created more school spirit amongst
current students and alumni. We are very excited that our
program is able to play for a Regional spot every year, and that
helps with recruiting and scheduling, as well.
Seventh Inning - Sum up the Lancers’ first year
in the Big South, including the nice run in the league tourney?
The first year was a learning experience
for us, and I believe our players caught on quickly. We played
some of our best baseball in the Big South Tournament and beat
two really good clubs to make it to the semifinal game. We
reached our main goal of the season and that was to make the
Eighth Inning - What are some of your biggest
challenges as you enter your first year as a head coach?
Ordering our new jerseys for this spring. I have
the tough decision of either keeping the old-style jerseys or
doing away with them.
Ninth Inning - What are some of the Lancers’ biggest strengths
Our team chemistry is very strong and we all work together
well to get better each day. We have a very experienced senior
class and we like our pitching matchups on the weekends.
(photos courtesy of Longwood Media