Ralph Weekly Co-Head Coach
At 1,212 career victories through 28 years as a collegiate head coach, Ralph Weekly continues to set the standard for success that his teams have championed through the years. The 2011 NFCA Hall of Fame inductee just completed his 14th as Tennessee's head coach in 2014.
The National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) honored his efforts throughout a distinguished, three-decade career that has spanned from his time in the U.S. Air Force through stops at Pacific Lutheran, Chattanooga and now Tennessee, with a 2011 induction into the NFCA Hall of Fame. Voted in by his coaching peers and with the organization consisting of just 49 previous inclusions, Weekly joined Ithaca Head Coach Deb Pallozzi in ceremonies at the annual NFCA Convention in Las Vegas, Nev., in Dec. of 2011.
Karen Weekly Co-Head Coach
An 18-year collegiate softball head coaching veteran boasting 921 career wins, Karen Weekly and her husband Ralph just completed their 14th season at the helm of the Tennessee softball program. Having guided UT to a staggering 664 victories and five top three national finishes (2005, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2013) and six appearances (2005, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2012, 2013) in the annual Women's College World Series since arriving to resuscitate the program prior to the 2002 season, Karen and Ralph have made it evident that tireless recruiting and solid coaching by the experienced Weeklys and their staff can produce huge dividends to the UT softball program.
The Lady Vols enjoyed another strong season in 2014 with a roster comprised of accomplished seniors and a slew of young rising stars. UT went 46-12 in 2014 and made its seventh trip to the NCAA Super Regionals. Tennessee went 17-7 in SEC play to finish second in the conference in the regular season.
Marty McDaniel Assistant Coach
Lauded for his teaching ability and his overall knowledge of the game, Marty McDaniel continues to provide his outgoing personality and boundless enthusiasm to the Lady Vol softball program. McDaniel has just completed his 11th season as assistant coach on the staff of Tennessee co-head coaches Ralph and Karen Weekly. A former head coach at Division II Armstrong Atlantic State University (Ga.), McDaniel's experience as both a coach and as a men's fastpitch veteran has been invaluable to the UT efforts.
During his time on the UT softball staff, McDaniel has been vital to the program's stunning success. His pitching pupils such as standouts Monica Abbott, Megan Rhodes, Ashton Ward, Cat Hosfield, Ivy Renfroe and Ellen Renfroe have helped extend Tennessee's streak of 40+ win seasons to 12 following the 2014 campaign. During his 10 years at Tennessee (2005-14) his pitching staffs have led the nation in ERA and strikeouts (2007), set a national record for shutouts (51 in 2005) and helped the Big Orange to 529 total victories, an average of 53 wins-per-season.
India Chiles Volunteer Assistant Coach
Chiles, a former All-American for the Lady Vols (2004-07), will primarily work with the slappers and outfielders. She joins the staff after working as a pharmaceutical sales representative for Johnson & Johnson. She is the current owner and operator of SlapperNation, LLC.
As a player, Chiles helped Tennessee reached the Women's College World Series three times (2005, 2006 and 2007) and the NCAA Tournament four times from 2004-07. The Lady Vols also made the WCWS championship game in 2007 and finished the season as national runners-up. Chiles has been regarded as one of the best slappers in the game and for her efforts was named SEC Player of the Year in 2007.
Melissa Brown Director of Softball
Melissa Brown returns to the University of Tennessee, where she is entering her first season as the Director of Softball Operations, serving on the staff of co-head coaches Ralph and Karen Weekly.
She takes the position after spending last season as a volunteer assistant coach at LSU. Her job duties will include the coordination, planning and execution of the program’s day-to-day activities, as well as coordinating team travel plans and meals and supervising the team’s managers.
During her time with the Tigers, the program made the NCAA Tournament and advanced to the Women’s College World Series. With her as a volunteer assistant coach in 2017, the Tigers made an amazing run to the Women’s College World Series by going on the road for a Super Regional in Tallahassee, Fla., where they defeated then-No. 4 Florida State to advance to their third straight WCWS.
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