NCAA Division II

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The West Florida baseball Argonauts open the 2018 season on Friday, hoping to improve over 2017. The Argos posted a 28-23 mark last season, finishing sixth in the Gulf South Conference tournament and unranked nationally.

“My job is to try to lead this team and build a culture and a team that they’re more than just playing for themselves,” said Head Coach Mike Jeffcoat, who enters his thirtheenth year in the dugout.

He says part of that job has moved from the diamond to cyberspace.

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The University of West Florida softball team opens the 2018 season this weekend, ranked third nationally in NCAA Division II, and picked to win the Gulf South Conference.

The Argonauts garnered 10 of 14 first-place votes in the GSC coaches’ poll. Valdosta State, Mississippi College, Alabama-Huntsville and North Alabama round out the top five. Lee, which met UWF in the South Super Regional last year, came in at number six.

“We’re excited; it’s quickly approaching and I think we’re ready,” said Head Coach Melissa Paul, who begins her fourth season at West Florida.

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While much of the attention of late has been on the University of West Florida football program, another UWF squad has been quietly making some history of its own.

Last week head coach Jeff Burkhamer and the team worked on different offenses and defenses in preparation for the next two games – both on the road. The Argos played at Union on Saturday, and at Christian Brothers on Monday night, winning both.

Burkhamer came to UWF in 2015, taking over a team that had won only seven games the previous season.

UWF Athletic Communications

Update Monday, May 29:

UWF SOFTBALL:

Since this story was first reported, the No. 10 University of West Florida softball team ended its season on Saturday afternoon with a 1-0 loss to West Virginia Wesleyan in the NCAA Championships in Salem.

The Argonauts’ ended their season with a record of 46-15, giving the program its most wins and highest winning percentage (.754) since 2005, and UWF’s 88 wins over the last two years are the most in a two-year span since 2005-06.

Dave Dunwoody, WUWF Public Media

The University of West Florida’s new football program on Monday held its first tryout for students seeking to join the squad as walk-ons.

About 75 UWF students, most of them having played football at high schools in Florida and Alabama, turned out at the UWF Intramural Fields. They’re hoping to make a team that doesn’t begin play until September of next year. The 2015 season will be spent at practice, with players being red-shirted – that is, not losing any eligibility in the run up to West Florida’s inaugural season.

UWF Football Yr Ender

Dec 20, 2014
Dave Dunwoody, WUWF Public Media

In early 2014, the University of West Florida took a major step towards fielding a football team in 2016. Pete Shinnick was introduced in February as the program’s first head coach.

By her count, UWF President Judy Bense said she waited five years, four months and 32 days for this announcement.

Shinnick came to Pensacola from the University of North Carolina-Pembroke, where he started that football program from scratch. In seven seasons, the Braves won 55 games – including a 9-2 mark in 2013, while advancing to the second round of the NCAA Division II playoffs.

Bob Barrett / WUWF News

This month, the University of West Florida's Men's Tennis Team completed a season that will be hard for anyone to match, let alone beat. They recently defeated Hawaii-Pacific to win the NCAA Division II national championship and complete an undefeated season. It's the third championship for the tennis program, and for head coach Derrick Racine.

Racine, who just completed his 16th year at UWF, sat down with WUWF's Bob Barrett to talk about the perfect campaign.

During the interview, Coach Racine talked about:

Dave Dunwoody, WUWF Public Media

Pete Shinnick was introduced Thursday, as the first head football coach at the University of West Florida. The work now begins towards the first game in September of 2016.

By her count, UWF President Judy Bense has waited five years, four months and 32 days for today’s announcement.

“I now can finally answer the question that I have been asked more as president than any other question,” said Bense. “”When are we going to start UWF football?’”