Ryan Stinson has been named head baseball coach at Pine Bluff High School, succeeding Greg Easter, who took a position at Watson Chapel over the summer.
Stinson, 40, assumes his first head coaching position after being in the Pine Bluff system as an assistant for the past seven years. He is also an assistant for the football team.
“I am pleased and happy,” Stinson said during a break at football practice Thursday afternoon. “I know it’s going to be a long hard road, but I am up for the challenge.”
A 1989 graduate of Pine Bluff, Stinson inherits a program that went 8-16 last year. Stinson played for the late Billy Bock at the prep level and eventually played at the University of Arkansas.
“Ryan has vast experience at the highest level,” athletic director Bobby Bolding said. “We are very excited about this opportunity to have him as a head coach. He is respected as a person and a coach.”
Bolding said he believes Stinson will bring a new attitude to the baseball program.
“He is full of energy and enthusiasm,” Bolding said. “And he’s very hungry to get the program back to where it used to be. I have full confidence he will do it the right way.”
Stinson said he would pull from his experiences as a player and assistant as he attempts to turn around the attitude and success of the historically rich program.
“I am not going to be Coach Bock or Coach Easter,” Stinson said. “But I will take something from all the guys that have coached me and that I have coached with.”
Stinson said he would instill work ethic and discipline into his players.
“We are going to play the right way,” he said. “We are going to try to have that winning tradition, that Zebra tradition.”
Stinson is faced with the challenge of revamping the program after a few years of sub-par performances.
“Those guys did a very good job,” Stinson said of the previous coaches. “They maintained this program and did well. I have so much respect and admiration for them because they allowed me to come in to the program and allowed me to get into this position. So what I’m going to try to do is instill a baseball tradition in our guys and hopefully winning will take care of itself.”