By Dave Wagner
CMI sports writer
As the new school year begins, Eastern New Mexico University is looking for a new baseball coach.
Chris Terry, who has been the Greyhounds’ coach for the past two seasons, on Monday informed the school that has accepted the same position at Regis University in Denver, a Division II school and a member of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference.
Terry, 40, from Sacramento, Calif., posted a 35-59 record in his two seasons at ENMU. He acknowledged it was a difficult decision, mainly because of the timing, but said it was an opportunity he couldn’t pass up.
“It came up very quickly,” Terry said. “It wasn’t something I was expecting. I kind of feel like we had things going (at ENMU), but long-term Regis is a terrific institution in a great location.
“The timing couldn’t be any worse, and I understand that. It’s one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.”
ENMU athletic director Jeff Geiser said assistant coach Andy Stewart will be the interim head coach.
“We hope to open it up by midweek,” Geiser said. “We hope to have (a new coach) within a month, if not sooner.
“Like I told the baseball team, when you participate in athletics you learn to deal with setbacks. We wish Chris Terry the best at Regis.”
After struggling through 2011, ENMU got out of the gates quickly last spring, winning 11 of its first 12 games. A lot of that came against RMAC teams, and the Greyhounds posted an 11-3 record for the season against that league.
ENMU finished the year 21-27, including 8-20 in the Lone Star Conference.
The Rangers, meantime, went 28-18 last season. Terry said they have a good tradition, noting that the school has had more players drafted into professional baseball over the last five years than any other RMAC program.
He said ENMU’s team is in place for next season, and should be fine.
“They’re going to have a lot of success,” Terry said of the Hounds. “(Stewart) is going to handle the transition, and he’s very capable of handling things.”
Geiser said he believes the program will be all right.
“We did make strides during the Chris Terry era,” he said. “The cupboard’s not bare. He did a good job of recruiting.”
Terry and his wife, Ann, have two daughters, Alyssa, 9, and Ashley, 7.