Missouri athletic director Jim Sterk announced earlier this week that his department was beginning a national search for its next head softball coach. Four days later, Sterk has already made his choice.
Larissa Anderson, who comes to Mizzou after four seasons as head coach at Hofstra, will lead the Missouri softball program. She is the 10th head coach in program history and will be formally introduced at a press conference in June, after she completes her duties as a vice president of the National Fastpitch Coaches Association at next week's Women's College World Series in Oklahoma City.
Anderson has agreed to a five-year contract with a base salary of $185,000. She will have a salary pool of $166,000 to hire two assistants.
She replaces Gina Fogue, who spent this past season as Missouri’s interim head coach after Sterk fired longtime head coach Ehren Earleywine just before the start of the 2018 season. Sterk said at the time that he lost confidence in Earleywine's ability to foster a “healthy environment” for players.
The Tigers went 30-29 under Fogue and finished last in the Southeastern Conference this season. They still made the program’s 12th consecutive NCAA regional. No. 4 national seed Oklahoma eliminated them from the postseason.
"I am very proud and honored to be the next head softball coach at Mizzou," Anderson said in a statement. "I want to thank Gina (Fogue) and her staff for their loyalty and dedication to Mizzou Softball.”
Anderson has been Hofstra’s head coach for the past four seasons. She led The Pride to a 130-73-1 record and two NCAA Tournament appearances. Her 2018 Hofstra team went 41-14 and won the Colonial Athletic Association title. Prior to becoming The Pride’s head coach, she spent 13 seasons as an assistant to longtime Hofstra head coach Bill Edwards. She was Edwards’ associate head coach for 10 of those seasons.
"I am thrilled that we were able to recruit Larissa Anderson to Mizzou and am confident that she will build upon the great Tiger Softball tradition that has been established over the last 44 seasons in Columbia," Sterk said in a statement. "She is highly-respected within the coaching community, enjoys an outstanding reputation for player development and has had tremendous success at Hofstra, first as an assistant coach, and then for the last four seasons as head coach. … I look forward to watching Larissa build upon our great tradition and compete for postseason appearances and championships for many years to come."