Stetson University head baseball coach Pete Dunn has been a constant presence and influence in the Hatters’ athletics department for more than 35 years and now, thanks to an agreement reached this summer, he will continue his career at Stetson into the future.
Dunn, who completed his 34th season as the Hatters head baseball coach this spring, signed a new contract extension that will keep him in the home dugout at Melching Field into the future. Terms on the contract are not being disclosed.
“Pete Dunn is the person who has made Stetson baseball what it is,” Director of Athletics Jeff Altier said. “It has been a tremendous relationship over the years. He has led the program in such a way that it is a nationally recognized and respected program.
“The great thing with this extension is that we know he will lead this program for the entirety of his career. To know that he will spend his entire career as a Hatter is very unique, especially in today's college environment.”
The contract will also carry Dunn, who will be inducted into the American Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame in January, through the college career of his son, Taylor, who is a member of the Hatters’ new football program and will be a senior during the 2016-17 school year.
“That is not by design, but is coincidental,” Dunn said. “With the start of football at Stetson, and my son being a part of that, it is exciting to know that I will be here through his playing days and continue to be a part of the Athletics program as the baseball coach.”
Dunn said it is due in great part to the leadership from Altier and Stetson University President, Dr. Wendy B. Libby, that he continues to be excited about the future of Stetson Athletics.
“I appreciate Jeff and Wendy and the entire university staying committed to me and my staff,” Dunn said. “I am thrilled to be able to continue to lead the program. It is certainly something that I am proud of.”
Dunn first became associated with Stetson baseball in 1969 as a player. He later served as a student assistant coach (1971-72) before joining the program as a full time assistant coach in 1977. He was named head coach at Stetson in 1979. By the end of his new contract he will have been a part of the program for more than 40 years.
“That is quite an accomplishment,” Dunn said. “You never start out thinking that is going to happen. It has been a great ride for me and my family. We have had success with the program and we are going to continue to work hard to have success. You never give up on that dream of getting to Omaha, and I will continue to work as hard as I can to make that a reality during my stay.”
The desire to take Stetson baseball to the College World Series is part of what keeps Dunn energized after all of these years.
“If I didn’t still have the desire and the fire in the belly to win and try to take this program to the next level, I wouldn’t have signed this new contract,” Dunn said. “We still have work to do here. It is a great situation with all of the excitement around Stetson and the things the football program is bringing. It is exciting to be a part of Stetson in any capacity, and certainly in the athletics program and the baseball program.”