The debate about whether Rob Childress is the right man for the job as Texas A&M head baseball coach is hardly a new one. But after another series loss, this time culminating in an embarrassing 20-7 throttling at the hands of Tennessee, the number of Aggies in his corner is dwindling by the day.
When viewed at a macro level, it’s inarguable that Childress has had success in College Station. He has won three conference titles (Big 12 in 2010 and 2011, SEC in 2016), and made two trips to the College World Series (2011 and 2017). He’s also taken his teams to the postseason 13 years in a row. But 7 of those 13 seasons have seen the Aggies fall in the Regional Round, and four others have seen them lose in the Super Regional (made extra painful by losing to Rice and TCU two times each). And despite two trips to Omaha in Childress’s tenure, the A&M program has won a single College World Series game in the history of the program (a remarkable feat considering they’ve been there six times).
So yes, Childress has had his detractors among the A&M fanbase for years, and unfortunately, this season has all but confirmed that those detractors are right. With 14 games remaining in the regular season, the Aggies are 23-19 overall and 5-13 in the SEC (tied for the second-worst record in the conference). In addition to only winning one SEC series all season (thanks Georgia), they’ve also had a series loss to Xavier and midweek losses to Abilene Christian, Rice (who is no longer the national power it once was) and Sam Houston State. While this was not a team that was highly touted to begin with, they have still managed to underachieve, and will likely finish as the worst Aggies team since Childress’s first season in 2006. That will also end A&M’s 13-year postseason streak, currently the longest in the nation.
The A&M baseball program has prided itself on its stability, with only three head coaches since 1959 (Tom Chandler from 1959-1984, Mark Johnson from 1985-2005, and Childress from 2006-present). And while that stability is to be admired, it shouldn’t be a reason to shy away from change. Childress has always carried himself respectably and is someone who’s time in Aggieland should be remembered fondly, but it is becoming apparent that time needs to come to an end.