Longtime Augusta State baseball coach Skip Fite accepted an offer to lead West Georgia's program.
Fite confirmed late Thursday he will be announced today as the new head coach of the Division II program in Carrollton, Ga. David Folkes, who led the Wolves for 19 seasons, stepped down in May.
Fite submitted his resignation to Augusta State athletic director Clint Bryant on Thursday afternoon.
"As much as I love Augusta State, I couldn't pass up this offer," Fite said.
An announcement to fill Fite's position is expected today, with assistant coach Chris Cooper likely moving into the head coaching role.
Fite, who coached 25 seasons at Augusta State, was a tenured professor in the Kinesiology and Health Science Department.
He said there were many perks to the West Georgia job: not having to teach, having a larger scholarship budget (West Georgia sports an enrollment of 4,000 more students than Augusta State); having a full-time assistant coach and having a lighted stadium.
Fite added the school plans to build a new stadium in three years.
"It really is a good job," he said. "It's a good institution. It's a substantial pay raise."
Fite also moves back closer to his family. He grew up about 30 miles away in Douglasville, Ga., where his father and one of his two brothers still live. His other brother lives in nearby Marietta, Ga.
Fite posted a 624-667-1 record with the Jaguars. He will take over a West Georgia team that went 13-33 last season.
"I plan to put it on the map as a baseball power," Fite said.
Fite was an assistant coach at West Georgia from 1978-81 before leading Brewton-Parker for four years. Fite started his first season with the Jaguars in 1985.
Fite's finest season at Augusta State came in 2004 when the Jaguars advanced to the South Atlantic Regional. The Jaguars posted a season high for wins, finishing with a 38-18 record.
"I love Augusta State," Fite said. "I've got an incredible amount of friends here. Augusta State will always be deep in my heart.
"I really want to thank coach Bryant and (Augusta State president) Dr. (William) Bloodworth. I want to thank Marvin Vanover for hiring me. And I want to thank all the players who have played for me."
Reach Chris Gay at (706) 823-3645 or firstname.lastname@example.org.