Ron Maestri confirmed Monday that he is stepping down at UNO’s baseball coach two seasons into his second stint on the job and 30 years after the first one ended.
“I just recently decided this was it,” Maestri said after a meeting with school president Peter Fos. “Coming back wasn’t something I was looking for.
“But I spent 30 years there building something and then after seeing it totally destroyed was upsetting. But I feel that in two years we were able to do the things were needed to do.”
That Maestri added, including rebuilding the program academically, financially and recruiting-wise after UNO had left Division I in 2010 only to reverse course two years later.
It didn’t include winning this time. UNO went 25-78 the last two seasons, including a 14-40 mark this year.
But from 1972-85, Maestri built the program into the state’s premier baseball powerhouse. In 1984, the Privateers became the first Louisiana school to reach the Division I College World Series.
Maestri stepped down the following year to concentrate on being the school’s athletic director.
He later spent eight years at COO of the New Orleans Zephyrs and also worked with the Greater New Orleans Sports Foundation.
Fos said Maestri will forever have UNO’s gratitude.
“Without Maes, I’m not sure we stay in Division I,” Fos said. “He stabilized our baseball, for sure.
I think he wants to do something else, now, but I’m sure we’ll be calling on him for help again. I wish we had a lot more people like him.”