Tom Austin
Tom Austin
Organization: Methodist University (NC)
Year: 2017 Inductee

The ninth coach in NCAA Div. III history to reach the 1,100-win plateau, Tom Austin has left his mark on the Methodist University baseball program. Through 37 years as head baseball coach at Methodist, Austin sports a 1,106-501-9 (.684) career record. His teams have eclipsed the 20-win mark in every season during his tenure and include 17 seasons of at least 30-wins and back-to-back 40-win seasons in 1986 and 1987.

Austin ranks ninth overall among all-time NCAA Division III head coaches and third among active Division III head coaches in victories. During his tenure at Methodist, Austin has guided the Monarchs to six NCAA Division III College World Series appearances (1986, 1988, 1991, 1992, 1995, 1996), finishing no lower than fifth in any of those appearances. The Monarchs' best finish was runner-up in 1995.

Under Austin's guidance, Methodist has tallied 21 Dixie Intercollegiate/USA South Athletic Conference championships, six NCAA Div. III South Regional titles and 22 NCAA Div. III National Tournament berths, most recently in 2015. Methodist has also earned recognition as the country's top-ranked NCAA Div. III team during three different seasons.

In addition, Austin's teams have consistently been one of the best in the USA South in stolen bases. His 1986 squad set an NCAA Division III single-season record for stolen bases with 334. That same team also set the NCAA Division III single-season record for walks with 440.

Austin has received numerous coaching honors during his career, including being selected the Dixie Intercollegiate/USA South Athletic Conference Coach of the Year 11 times, the ABCA/Diamond NCAA Div. III South Region Coach of the Year seven times and the North Carolina College Coach of the Year twice.

A total of 29 players under Austin have garnered ABCA/Rawlings NCAA Div. III All-America honors, and 134 players have been selected first team All-Dixie Intercollegiate/USA South Athletic Conference.

A native of Philadelphia, Austin attended Seminole Community College in Sanford, Florida, where he was an All-Florida Conference outfielder and set the state junior college stolen base record. From there, Austin transferred to Rollins College, where he received his bachelor's degree in history in 1972. He then earned his master's degree in education from Rollins in 1976.

Austin began his coaching career at his high school alma mater – Bishop Moore High School – serving as football and baseball coach from 1973-79.

A Lifetime ABCA member, Austin has been involved in the ABCA for four decades and served as a clinician at the 2015 ABCA Convention in Orlando.