SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Sports) – After 18 years as the Utes head baseball coach, Bill Kinneberg announced he is retiring at the end of the season.
Kinneberg spent 37 years total as either a head coach or an assistant.
Kinneberg was named the Pac-12 Coach of the Year after leading the Utes to the Pac-12 championship, in 2016. He has won 381 games at Utah and 625 total in his career. He has led Utah to two NCAA Tournament appearances, in 2009 and 2016. The 2009 Utes won the Mountain West tournament championship and earned Utah’s first invitation to the NCAA Tournament since 1960.
“There are so many people in my life that I need to thank, starting with Dr. Chris Hill who believed in me twice, hiring me in 1995 and then again in 2004,” Kinneberg said in a statement. “Also, thank you to Mark Harlan who has allowed me to coach these last three years under his guidance. To all the assistant coaches for their tireless work and for their loyalty to me and the program, I can’t thank you enough. Thanks to the Utah Baseball fans for their support of me and the student-athletes all of these years. The support staff within the athletic department are so generous with their time and effort and are such a pleasure to work with. I will miss them all. But, the group I will always be indebted to and miss the most are all the student-athletes who played for me over the years, going back to UTEP, Wyoming, Arizona State, University of Arizona, and the University of Utah. They have touched my life in so many ways and given me so many thrills that I will never forget. I want to thank my family, starting with my Mom and Dad, my siblings, and naturally my wife Janet and my sons, Joe and David. They have enjoyed the journey with me but have sacrificed so much for me over the years. I am anxious for the next chapter of my life, spending time with my family, traveling, playing some golf, but most of all, being the best Ute fan I can be. Thanks for everything the University has done for me and my family.”
“First and foremost, I want to congratulate Bill on a remarkable career,” said Harlan. “His care for his students has been second to none. I worked with Bill and was fortunate to know him back in the day when we both worked at the University of Arizona, and I am grateful to have worked with him again here at Utah for the last three years. He is a terrific coach but an even better person. I want to thank Bill, Janet and their entire family for all they have done for this program, and wish them all the very best. Utah Baseball and Bill Kinneberg will forever be connected, and I look forward to having Bill remain closely associated with the program in his retirement.”
Kinneberg has had 11 of his Utah players drafted in the first 10 rounds, including C.J. Cron, the first Ute drafted in the first round in program history, selected 17th overall in 2011. Cron, Stephen Fife (third round, 2008) and Tyler Wagner (fourth round, 2012) have all reached the majors.
Kinneberg’s final series will begin against USC this Thursday, May 27, at Lindquist Field in Ogden.