Mangrum lands former Virginia Tech standout as third assistant
Friday, July 17, 2009

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (July 17, 2009) - Head East Tennessee State University softball coach Andrea Mangrum put the finishing touches on her 2009-10 Lady Buccaneer squad on Friday, as she added former Virginia Tech standout Callie Rhodes (Broadway, Va.) to her coaching staff. Rhodes will take over a plethora of duties such as: speed training, recruiting, outfield workouts and assisting the slap hitters.


Rhodes, who was a four-year letterwinner at Virginia Tech, graduated as the Hokies' all-time leader in career and single-season stolen bases. Currently, Rhodes ranks second all-time in career stolen bases, but she is the only Virginia Tech player in school history to record 30 or more stolen bases in three separate seasons. In her four-year playing career, Rhodes played in 225 games (195 starts) and hit .315 with 102 runs scored and 113 steals. Rhodes also had a hand in leading the Hokies to back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances in 2006 and 2007, as well as guiding Virginia Tech to the 2007 ACC Championship title.


"The hire of Callie is another step towards a championship season for our program," said Mangrum. "She brings a new dynamic to our team with her expertise in speed, slapping, and strength and conditioning. Along with her defensive specialty in the outfield, she will assist in the efforts of taking this program to the next level. Her experiences at Virginia Tech and playing in the BIG EAST and ACC will bring a wealth of knowledge to our program."


Not only did Rhodes excel on the field for the Hokies, but she was a scholar in the classroom. Rhodes earned a B.A. in Communications from Virginia Tech where she graduated Magna Cum Laude in 2007, and was also selected to the BIG EAST and ACC All-Academic teams. On the field, Rhodes was named to the 2007 All-ACC Second Team (Designated Player) and the NFCA All-Northeast Region Second Team. In addition, the speedster was a two-time VaSID All-State First Team selection and a five-time Strength and Conditioning Softball Athlete of the Year recipient.


"I am most pleased with her character and reputation as a player, because she fits the mold of the foundations of our program," commented Mangrum. "To me, this is more important than knowledge and experience."


Rhodes will begin her ETSU coaching duties in mid-August after leaving her full-time job as an Account Executive for ISP Sports in Blacksburg.  


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