“I took the call in the car, and I was elated,” Fitzgerald said. “…It was just evident that everyone’s moving in the same direction, and I kept thinking, ‘I’m kind of on the same page as them.'”
He’s excited to join the university’s winning culture.
“It’s not surprising to me at all that [men’s basketball] won [the national championship],” Fitzgerald said. “I think it’s a precursor of what we can do here. It’s all the sports. I’ve been so impressed with every coach I’ve met.”
It took less than four weeks for athletic director Travis Goff to replace Ritch Price, who retired after 20 seasons as head coach. More than ten candidates were formally interviewed for the position.
“There’s no reason why all of us, collectively, can’t and wouldn’t expect Kansas baseball to compete for Big 12 championships, to be a regular postseason contender and to do things that have happened here,” Goff said. “We fully believe that will happen again with Dan at the helm.”
Fitzgerald is embracing the challenges of leading a new team that lost it’s best offense player.
“To me, the challenges are fun,” Fitzgerald said. “They’re everywhere, but you can out-team someone. You can out-together someone or however you want to put it, and that’s what I care about.”
Fitzgerald is on a six-year contract.