The final game of McNeese State’s baseball season ended up being the final game of Terry Burrows’ career as the Cowboys coach.
Burrows stepped down following a 10-3 elimination-round loss to Lamar in the Southland Conference tournament that wrapped up a 23-31 season. He finished with one winning season in six years.
“I know in my heart that now is the right time for me to move on,” Burrows said in a school release. “The game of baseball, as well as McNeese, have been a huge part of my life and always will be. I’ll always be thankful and appreciative for the opportunities and lifelong friendships both have given me.”
The school will hold a formal news conference this morning at Jack Doland Field House.
Athletic Director Tommy McClelland indicated in a statement released by the school that Burrows was not forced out.
“From the day Terry Burrows was hired as our head baseball coach, we have been 100 percent supportive of him,” McClelland said. “That same level of support still exists today. Terry has done so many things that have improved our baseball program during his tenure, including APR (Academic Progress Rate), facilities and finances.”
Unfortunately for Burrows and McNeese, his ability to transform the program off the field did not translate to the diamond. McNeese reached the conference tournament three times in his tenure, going two-and-out the last two years. The Cowboys never placed higher than sixth in the league under Burrows.
Burrows did help mentor several players to achieve individual success, though. Former Cowboys Jace Peterson and Lee Orr are both starting for high Class-A Lake Elsinore in the San Diego Padres organization, and current pitcher Bryce Kingsley was named the Southland’s freshman of the year this week.
The season began with promise as McNeese got off to a 17-9 start in the opening half of the year. But the Cowboys plummeted in April with an ugly 3-17 stretch sinking any illusion that McNeese could contend for the conference title.
McNeese saved face by finishing 3-3 to reach the conference tournament, but it still required a loss by Nicholls State on the final day of the regular season as the Cowboys failed to clinch the spot themselves.
Burrows was inducted into the school’s Hall of Fame in 2009 for his feats as a pitcher. He was named the SLC Pitcher of the Year in 1990 before being drafted by the Texas Rangers and embarking on an 11-year professional career.
He served as a pitching coach under Todd Butler in 2002 and ’03 before taking over the program as head coach in 2008.