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Penn State added Major League experience to work with its pitchers, as Josh Newman joins the coaching staff for the 2017-18 year.
Newman spent five seasons in professional baseball before moving into coaching, most recently serving as the pitching coach at Marshall for the past four seasons and adding recruiting coordinator responsibilities this past year.
"I'm very excited and honored to join a prestigious institution and program such as Penn State's and I am looking forward to becoming a part of this family," said Newman. "I want to thank Coach Cooper for this opportunity and I am ecstatic to be working with him, this staff and especially all of the student-athletes. We Are!"
Notable accomplishments for Newman at Marshall include mentoring Chase Boster, the all-time winningest pitcher in Marshall history, and seeing three pitchers from his staff have their names called in the 2016 MLB Draft. This past season, the pitching staff held opponents to three runs or less in 21 games, including a complete-game shutout at nationally-ranked Florida Atlantic. Additional wins over nationally-ranked teams included Virginia Tech and Southern Miss. In 2016, Newman helped guide Marshall to a program record 34 wins and a second-place conference finish, led by three pitchers earning All-Conference USA recognition. D1Baseball.com named Newman as a "top, up and coming" Division I assistant coach in 2015, as one pitcher was named to the All-Conference USA team and three players signed professional contracts. His inaugural season with the Herd in 2014 resulted in the school's first Conference USA Pitcher of the Week Award since 2008 and one player earning Conference USA All-Freshman honors.
"We are extremely excited to welcome Josh Newman and his family to Happy Valley," said Cooper. "Josh's ability to connect with and develop pitchers is a strength. He has pitched at the highest level of professional baseball and can educate our players on what it takes to be successful. More importantly, he is a person of high character that will represent Penn State University in a first class manner. We are very fortunate to add The Newman Family to Nittany Nation!"
Newman is no stranger to the Big Ten after totaling seven years in the dugout at Ohio State, as he lettered for four years as a student-athlete (2001-04) and served as a volunteer assistant coach for three seasons (2011-13) following his professional playing career. Under the guidance of Newman and pitching coach Mike Stafford, the Buckeye's team ERA dropped 1.70 over three seasons to 3.24 at the end of the 2013 campaign. In 2013, Ohio State ranked in the Top 40 nationally in every pitching category, including walks per nine innings (8th, 2.45), strikeout-to-walk ratio (15th, 2.75), WHIP (17th, 1.19), hits per nine innings (33rd, 8.29) and ERA (38th, 3.24). Ohio State also had three pitchers earn All-Big Ten honors that season. Three were drafted during his tenure as John Kuchno was a 2012 18th-round selection by the Pittsburgh Pirates, and in 2013, Brad Goldberg was taken by the Chicago White Sox in the 10th round and Brett McKinney was taken in the 19th by the Pirates.
A native of Wheelersburg, Ohio and a 2004 Ohio State graduate with a Bachelors of Arts degree in history, Newman ranks third all-time at Ohio State in career wins (32), innings pitched (369.0) and strikeouts (291). He was a freshman All-American in 2001 a three-time All-Big Ten honoree - including a first-team selection in 2004 - and a three-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree. In his career, Newman helped the Buckeyes to a 161-84-1 record, a Big Ten regular season championship (2001) and two Big Ten Tournament championships (2002 and 2003). Ohio State went to three NCAA Regional tournaments and hosted an NCAA Super Regional (2003) during his four years in Columbus.
Newman was drafted in the 19th round of the 2004 MLB Draft and signed a professional contract with the Colorado Rockies. He had previously been drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in 2003 but he elected to stay at Ohio State for his senior season.
The Wheelersburg High School graduate spent three seasons in the minors before making his Major League debut against Philadelphia on Sept. 12, 2007, and making the Colorado Rockies World Series roster that season. He jumped between Triple-A Colorado Springs and the Rockies in 2008 before being claimed off waivers by the Kansas City Royals in July. Newman pitched in 14 games over his two seasons between Colorado and Kansas City, making his last appearance in September 2008.
He and his wife Sarah have two children - Ayda and Kash.