Owls play three intrasquad games this week
Owls begin season Feb. 15th
Owls will play three games to conclude fall practices
Owls went through 14 intra-squad scrimmages, World Series and two games
Signing class features seven high school and four junior college transfers from Florida
Dickie Hart joined the Florida Atlantic University baseball coaching staff in August, 2013 as the program's hitting and infield coach.
Under Hart's direction in 2015, FAU ranked in the top 20 in the nation in walks (6th), hits (15th), batting average (20th), on-base percentage (11th), runs (16th), and sacrifice flies (2nd). FAU increased its scoring by more than 50% from last season (238 in 2014 to 417 in 2015) and blasted 83 more extra-base hits this year, including 43 home runs, more than double its 2014 total. The Owls led C-USA in batting average (.300) SLG (.440), OB% (.395), runs (417), hits (632), RBI (367), doubles (123), triples (22), TBs (928), walks (301), and sac flies (36). FAU's 22 triples marked a program record while the Owls tied a C-USA record with four triples in a game at Western Kentucky in May.
In 2014, Hart saw FAU junior shortstop Mitch Morales be selected by the San Diego Padres in the MLB First Year Player Draft. Offensively, the Owls notched ten games with at least eight runs scored, including outings of 17, 16 and 13 runs.
Hart also produced a Freshman All-American and All-Conference USA member in infielder Stephen Kerr, who led the squad in batting for the majority of the season.
Hart was a middle infielder during one of the most successful periods in the program's proud history, recording a .641 winning percentage (154-86). He ranks second in school history with 74 runs scored during the 1999 season, when he earned first-team All-Atlantic Sun Conference honors and was an honorable mention All-American selection by the American Baseball Coaches Association. That senior season, Hart helped FAU tie a NCAA record with 34 consecutive victories. He played professionally with the Anaheim Angels for the 1999 and 2000 seasons.
During Hart's first season with the Owls, the program captured a Sun Belt Conference title and made an appearance in the 2013 NCAA Chapel Hill Regional, where they defeated No. 1 seed UNC. Under his guidance as hitting coach, the Owls racked up 175 extra-base hits and 47 home runs.
Hart's coaching career included a successful three-year coaching stint at Tarpon Springs High School near Tampa. He earned 5A Pinellas Coach of the Year honors in 2011 and was named the 2012 Pinellas County Coach of the Year after compiling a 24-5 record. His teams made two regional appearances and won district championships. He has also been an associate scout within the Tampa Bay Rays organization. Overall he had a .620 winning percentage (54-33 record) in the three seasons as head coach.
This is Hart's second stint on the FAU baseball coaching staff, serving as a volunteer coach in 2003 while earning a master's degree in business, with a concentration in sports administration. He also worked in the Owls' athletic marketing department.