LAFAYETTE — Clint Myers won two NCAA softball championships at Arizona State, and now he is taking Auburn to that program’s first super regional in school history.
When Myers talks about the Ragin’ Cajuns — he knows a couple of ways that he wants to be like Mike.
(Louisiana-Lafayette softball coach Mike Lotief) gets the most out of his players and his players believe in him,” Myers said. “There are a lot of similarities between us. I hope my players feel the same way (about me).”
Lotief shook his head when he pondered the coaching career of his friend from Bismarck, North Dakota, who has made his coaching name in both Arizona and Alabama.
“What he did at Arizona State was nothing short of phenomenal, and what he is doing now at Auburn in the period of time he has been there has been phenomenal.”
Myers is in his second season as the head coach at Auburn. He took charge of that squad last year after he guided the Sun Devils from 2006-13.
A main motivator that got Myers excited about going to Auburn was the opportunity to work with his sons. Corey Myers serves as the Tigers’ pitching coach and Casey Myers is a volunteer assistant coach.
“I am a lucky man each day I get out of bed because I go to a job I truly love and I get to work with my sons,” Myers said. “This is a great university with great support. Everything we do from this point on is a first for Auburn. It’s the first regional they have hosted and it’s the first super regional they have hosted or even played in.”
Lotief has frequently credited his support system for being a big part of the reason the Cajuns and Myers’ team will tangle this weekend in a super regional.
“The fact that this program has remained relevant despite the infusion of money by the bigger schools is a testament to this university, its athletic department, this community and these kids (the players),” Lotief said.
As Myers prepares for the atmosphere this weekend that will likely resemble a football tailgate party, he also had thoughts about Lotief, who has battled through throat infections and pneumonia this season.
“My prayers and best wishes are with him and his family,” Myers said. “We will fight tooth and nail during the game. That’s the way it’s supposed to be. They are a quality program.”
Lotief’s excitement about the two teams meeting also contained a potential competition idea that will not be part of the festivities.
“I love Clint. He and I are good friends,” Lotief said. “There is a lot of respect. If it was me against him ... if we were wrestling or seeing who could hit the ball the farthest, I think I could out-do him. But it’s going to be our girls against his girls and I like the match up.”