Ehren Earleywine has found a new job.
The former Missouri softball coach, who MU fired in late January, will be the director of athletics for Jefferson City Public Schools. Earleywine, a Jefferson City native, will start in his new role on July 1.
“For me personally, it’s a beautiful thing that my career and my passion come together in the city and at the school I love most,” Earleywine said in a statement.
Missouri athletic director Jim Sterk fired Earleywine just days before the 2018 season began. Sterk cited “a culmination of leadership concerns” as the reason for his decision, but he did not provide specifics.
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“We do not take action of this magnitude without careful thought and consideration, however, we have lost confidence in Coach Earleywine’s leadership to foster the type of healthy environment we expect for our student-athletes, and as a result, believe it is in the program’s best interest to make a change at this time,” Sterk said.
In a letter he released to reporters the day after his firing became public, Earleywine said he was “totally blindsided” by his ouster. He also questioned MU leadership over the past few years. He seemed to indirectly reference the November 2015 boycott by the Missouri football team that helped push out former UM System President Tim Wolfe and MU Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin.
“Political correctness, allowing kids more power than people in positions of authority, and their love affair with soft-coaching has gotten the University where it is today,” Earleywine wrote. “I used to care deeply, now it’s someone else’s problem.”
Earleywine entered 2018 in the final year of his contract. He was 482-182 (.726) in 11 seasons at Mizzou. Under his leadership, the Tigers reached eight NCAA Super Regionals and three Women’s College World Series.
“Ehren brings a wealth of experience as a collegiate coach, a parent, an athlete and a former Jaybird,” Gary Verslues, assistant superintendent of secondary education for Jefferson City Public Schools, said in a statement. “He has many professional connections at the regional, state and national levels that will be extremely beneficial to our district. He is a winner.”