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ISU Softball

 Softball 6/13/2023 2:56:00 PM Jonathan Match, ISU Media Relations
Softball 6/13/2023 2:56:00 PM Jonathan Match, ISU Media Relations

Andrew Rich Extended to Lead Bengal Softball Through 2026

POCATELLO, Idaho – Idaho State Softball Head Coach Andrew Rich has been renewed to lead the Bengals through the 2026 season as announced by Idaho State University Director of Athletics Pauline Thiros.

Thiros said it was an easy deal to extend, "We have seen significant progress in bringing Idaho State Softball back to the top of the Big Sky. Coach Rich is invested in the championship culture he is leading, as are the players and the staff. Miller Ranch is getting some improvements, Coach is recruiting the best of the best, and the players are feeling supported and know they are getting better. The community has wrapped its arms around our team, and we are motivated to keep it moving forward in pursuit of a Big Sky Championship and that spot in the NCAA Tournament. Coach Rich is the right leader to make that happen, and we feel very fortunate to keep him in Pocatello."

Rich's contract will make him the 2nd highest-paid Head Softball Coach in the Big Sky at $78,000 annually, with a bonus structure offering the opportunity to achieve an additional $16,000 in supplemental compensation.

Since taking over the helm of the Bengals' program in 2021, Rich has led consistent growth in both seasons for the Orange and Black.

In two years' time, Rich has compiled a 45-55 (.450) overall record and a winning 18-15 Big Sky Conference Record.

In 2023, Rich led the Bengals to a Regular Season Big Sky Conference Championship sweeping Sac State on the road and then winning the final road series vs Weber State to clinch the title, the first for ISU since the 2015 season.

At the conclusion of the 2023 season, the Bengals were awarded 12 Big Sky All-Conference honors. The second most post-season awards in program history, including Rich being named the 2023 Big Sky Conference Coach of the Year

In his inaugural coaching season in 2022, Rich led the Bengals to the Big Sky Conference postseason tournament for the first time since the 2019 season and the team's first tournament win in four years.

"I am very excited about what our program has been able to accomplish in a short time here in Pocatello," said Head Coach Andrew Rich. "We have a group that understands what it takes to win a championship and is hungry for more and I am very excited and thankful to be a part of that process. I can't wait for our team to show up in August so we can get back to work on defending our Big Sky title."

Rich and the Bengals will host the 2024 Big Sky Conference Championship Tournament at Miller Ranch Stadium on the campus of Idaho State University.