Earlier this February, Carroll College announced that it would be adding softball to its athletics program. Tuesday, Carroll College Director of Athletics Bruce Parker announced that Helena native and former Eastern Oregon head coach Aaron Jackson has agreed to become Carroll College’s first softball head coach.
“We are very excited to have Aaron on board as the first head coach at Carroll College, he brings a great love of the game, numerous recruiting contacts and a passion for Helena and our institution,” Parker said.
Jackson who spent three seasons (2011-13) at Eastern Oregon as head coach looks forward to the opportunity to build a program in his hometown.
“It’s a great day to be a Saint! To be the first head coach in Carroll College history for softball is just outstanding. I love Helena and Carroll College is so close to my heart,” Jackson said.
Jackson, a Helena High native began coaching his younger sister, Sarah in a Helena ASA 12U league and has fallen in love with the game ever since with stops at Missoula Sentinel High School (03-07) and MSU-Billings (07-10) as an assistant coach before being named Eastern Oregon’s head coach in 2011.
With the distinct privilege of starting a program from scratch, Jackson has developed a plan to get the Fighting Saints up and running by the fall season.
“First, I need to build relationships on campus, share my values and vision for the program – let everyone know what Carroll College Softball will look like,” Jackson said.
“I’m going to hit the recruiting trail and find high-academic kids and kids who want to play softball.
We need to begin the scheduling process and create support for the program right away.”
In regards to recruiting, Jackson wants to work from the inside out, “I want to start right here on campus, then move to the local schools both in Helena and across the state of Montana and continue to use the contacts and resources I have developed in the surrounding area over the past several years,” Jackson said.
During Jackson’s three years at Eastern Oregon, EOU had 10 players earn Cascade Collegiate Conference Academic All-Conference designations with a team GPA of 3.3
Additionally, the Mountaineers picked up seven NAIA top-25 victories and had five All-Conference award winners.
“I’m so happy to be here. Carroll College exudes excellence. I know that we will be successful here, from the top down the leadership is phenomenal all the way from Dr. Evans to Mr. Parker and beyond,” Jackson said.
It’s really special to be back in the place that I always wanted to return to. Coaching a sport I love and in a town I love, I don’t think I could have found a better situation,” Jackson emphasized.
Jackson holds a bachelors degree from the University of Montana in health and human performance and has completed his coursework for a masters of science in sports, recreation and fitness management from MSU-Billings.
With an exhaustive coaching search having come to an end, Parker is thrilled with the Fighting Saints hire: “I want to thank the search committee that was headed up by our head volleyball coach Moe Boyle. She did a great job directing the search and finding some outstanding candidates. We are thrilled with our selection and can’t wait to begin the Carroll College Softball Program this coming year.”
Aaron Jackson can be contacted via email: firstname.lastname@example.org