Doug Gillis was hired on August 10, 2018, and enters his second year at Virginia Tech as an assistant coach.
Gillis transformed the Hokies’ pitching staff into one of the best in the nation in 2019, boasting two pitchers with 20-plus wins, the only team in the nation to say so, and finished second in the country for shutouts with 22. Those two right-handers, Carrie Eberle and Keely Rochard, would go on to be named first-team All-ACC, with both owning under 1.85 ERAs.
Eberle, who also picked up NFCA All-Region (Mid-Atlantic), was named the ACC Pitcher of the Year, marking Tech’s fourth in school history. She did so behind a 25-8 record and a 164-55 strikeout-to-walk ratio. Rochard also had a fine year in the circle, breaking the school record for winning percentage (.880) with a 22-3 record and throwing two no-hitters and Tech’s first-ever perfect game against a ranked opponent (then-No. 20/17 JMU).
Under Gillis’ direction, the Hokies led the ACC in shutouts (22), fewest earned runs allowed (104) and fewest home runs allowed (20), while being second for ERA (1.98), fewest runs allowed (149), walks (108), strikeouts (359) and opponent batting average (.212).
Prior to his time at Tech, Gillis served in the same position at Kennesaw State for two years with head coach Pete D’Amour, overseeing the pitchting staff.
He was instrumental in the development of Owls’ pitcher Alley Cutting, who earned Atlantic Sun Conference (ASUN) Pitcher of the Year. Cutting also was tabbed first-team all-conference and NFCA All-South Region and put together a perfect game and no-hitter apiece during her redshirt freshman year in 2017 on her way to winning ASUN Freshman of the Year. She sits in the top-10 all-time list in nine categories.
Gillis also developed Abigail Green inside the circle her final two years playing for Kennesaw State. Green earned second-team all-conference honors and was an NFCA All-America Scholar-Athlete in 2017. She posted one of the best pitching seasons in Owls history in 2018, owning 8.95 strikeouts per seven innings mark, the third-best in program history for an individual season.
Under Gillis’ watch, the Owls led the ASUN in total strikeouts (370) this past season, which was 61 more than the next best in the league. The pitching staff also surrendered the fewest walks in the conference.
Prior to his two-year stint with Kennesaw State, Gillis spent eight years on the staff at Missouri. He spent the 2015 and 2016 seasons as head pitching coach after serving the previous six campaigns as director of pitching for the Tigers.
In addition to his role at Missouri, Gillis founded the Gillis USA Softball Training Academy in 1986 where he mentored seven USA Team members, three USA Team Gold Medalists, 20 collegiate All-Americans and eight players who pitched in the Women’s College World Series.
Before his time in Columbia, Gillis served as an associate head coach at Saginaw Valley State from 1986-1991, and in 1989 helped lead the Cardinals to the NAIA national championship.
Having a knack for developing elite pitchers in the college ranks, Gillis has developed five different conferences’ Pitcher of the Year selections, including the likes of the ACC, ASUN, Big 12, Big Ten and SEC. He also has produced three PGF national championship pitchers, 62 high school state championship pitchers and 430 high school all-state pitchers throughout his career.
During Gillis’ tenure as a coach, he’s made three Women’s College World Series appearances and eight Super Regional showings.
An accomplished fastpitch softball player himself, Gillis is a six-time USA Team member in three different decades. He has won a New Zealand provincial national champion, serving as an assistant coach for Auckland.
He is in the top-10 all-time list for International Softball Congress victories, which is the highest level of softball in the world, the top-five list for USA Softball men’s major division national tournament victories and was named to the International Softball Congress All-World 2010 Team, being the only American pitcher selected.
A two-time USA Softball men’s major division national champion, Gillis won a gold medal in 2002 on the USA National Team during the Pan-American Championships and a gold medal in 1998 at the U.S. Olympic Festival. He also won the MVP pitcher award at the 1995 International National Championship in the Dominican Republic.
Accustom to other parts of the world, he has pitched internationally in Canada, the Dominican Republic, Cayman Islands, Netherlands, New Zealand and the Czech Republic.