Assistant Coach/Recruiting Coordinator
Connally is in his ninth season as the Lumberjack hitting instructor and camp director.
Last season under Connally's watch as the Lumberjack baseball program had a record-setting year from junior shortstop Hunter Dozier, who became the first player in program history to be taken in the first round and the highest Southland Conference selection of any baseball player when he was selected eighth overall by the Kansas City Royals.
In a three-year career, Connally coached Dozier to first-team All-America honors and SLC Player and Hitter of the Year awards in 2013. In his junior season, Dozier led the conference in batting average, slugging percentage, doubles, home runs and total bases in 2013, and finished the regular season ranked among the nation's top five in each category. Dozier left Nacogdoches as the school's all-time leader in both hits and doubles. He also owns the single-season record for multi-hit games and doubles.
In addition to the All-America honors, Dozier became the first 'Jack in program history to be named a semifinalist for the Golden Spikes Award. He was also a national finalist for both the Brooks Wallace Award (nation's top shortstop), and semifinalist for the Dick Howser Award (top player).
In 2012, the 'Jacks had the best offense in the league for a second consecutive year, leading the SLC in team batting average, hits and doubles. SFA was the only school in conference to hit over .300 as a team, with a team batting average of.301.
Connally has coached a four MLB draftees in his time in Nacogdoches, as Steven Hill and Jared Pitts who were both selected in the 2007, Bryson Myles who was selected in 2011, and Dozier in the 2013 Major League Baseball draft. Hill was named the SLC Hitter and Player of the Year in 2007 and, at the time, left SFA as the school's all-time leader in nearly every offensive category before Myles arrival in 2011. Myles was the conference player, hitter and newcomer of the year in 2011, rewriting the history books in his name after one season at SFA.
Twelve `Jack hitters have been named to the all-conference squad since 2006, including Hill in 2007, All-American Bryson Myles in 2011 and most recently Ricardo Sanchez and All-American Hunter Dozier in 2012. The `Jacks led the Southland in home runs in 2007, mashing 73 to set a new school record. SFA also set a new school record in batting average in 2010, hitting .325. Nearly every SFA offensive record has been claimed by one of Connally's players in the last six seasons.
Prior to coming to Nacogdoches, Connally spent three seasons as an assistant baseball coach focusing on hitting and fielding at the Trinity Valley School in Fort Worth, Texas, under head coach Johnny Miller. While there he was able to tutor a pair of future collegiate players including Louisville shortstop John Dao, and Texas Tech catcher Clayton Snodgrass.
Following his time with TVS, Connally went to the Westside Baseball Academy in Fort Worth, where he served as the hitting director as well as facilitating camp and clinic opportunities.
In 2001, he served as an assistant coach with TCU, where he coached hitting, and worked with the Horned Frog outfielders.
Connally earned a Bachelor of Science degree from TCU in 2000, where he was a standout on the baseball diamond. Connally was a two-time first-team All-WAC athlete who earned All-America honors in 1997. He belted 40 home runs in his two seasons at TCU and set the school's single-season home run record (23) in 1997. Those records still stand today. He followed that up by setting TCU's single-season mark in runs batted in (80) the following year.
Connally's collegiate career began at McClennan Community College where he was a two-time all-conference and all-region selection. He hit 30 home runs during his two seasons at as a Highlander and earned All-America honors in 1996.
He was drafted by the Chicago Cubs organization in 1998 and spent his first season with the Williamsport Cubs of the New York Penn League before moving on to the Daytona Cubs where he would finish up his professional career. While at Williamsport, Connally finished the season tied for the league lead in home runs with 10 and was named to the all-star team.
Connally resides in Nacogdoches.