Kevin Hite enters his 18th season as a collegiate assistant coach and the 14th at his alma mater. He has served as the pitching coach for the Phoenix since 2006.
Hite began his coaching career at CU as a volunteer assistant while playing in the San Diego Padres organization and was part of the staff for an entire season in 2001. He then worked four years at Trevecca Nazarene before returning to Cumberland as the pitching coach in 2006.
During his tenure at CU, five pitchers have earned All-America honors, including Robert Clayton (2007), Shawn Schaefer (2010), Aaron Wilkerson (2010 & 2011), Will Locante (2011) and Anthony Gomez (2013). The Phoenix have made four NAIA World Series appearances, finishing as national runner-up in 2006, and claimed the 2010 and 2014 national championships. Cumberland has won three TranSouth Conference and one Mid-South Conference regular season championships as well as four TranSouth Conference and one Mid-South Conference Tournament title since Hite returned in 2006.
The Phoenix finished in the Top 25 nationally in earned-run-average seven times in 10 seasons from 2006-15.
CU placed 14th in ERA (3.56) and 12th in opponent batting average (.250) during the 2006 season, with Zach Whitmer (12) and Drew Shetrone (11) both in the Top 10 in wins (and Karl Mejlholm adding 10 victories) and Shetrone ninth in ERA (1.78). In 2007 the unit was 22nd nationally in ERA (3.81) and Robert Clayton ranked seventh in wins (12).
The club was 13th in ERA (3.74) and 24th in opponent batting average (.258) in 2008 while Robert Post ranked second in the country in opponent batting average (.167) and in the Top 27 in six total categories and Shawn Schaefer was in the Top 33 in two other individual rankings.
CU was fourth in total strikeouts (464), 10th in ERA (3.76) and 20th in opponent batting average (.268) during the 2010 national championship campaign, with Schaefer and Aaron Wilkerson tied for the national lead in wins (14), Wilkerson No. 1 in strikeouts (125) and eighth in ERA (2.13) and Schaefer fourth in punchouts (108) and seventh in innings pitched (108.2).
Cumberland finished 10th in strikeouts (418), 11th in opponent batting average (.244) and 20th in earned-run-average (3.46) in 2011, while Will Locante was third nationally in strikeouts (118) and Wilkerson ranked in the Top 10 in five categories, including third in wins (12), seventh in opponent batting average (.179) and ninth in ERA (1.49).
The Phoenix ranked 25th in strikeouts (370) in 2012 and 23rd in ERA (3.30) in 2013, with Anthony Gomez fifth in the nation in earned-run-average (1.16) and eighth in wins (11). Last season the Phoenix won their third national title, placing 19th in strikeouts (367) and 22nd in ERA (3.25). Gomez ranked third in the country in innings pitched (118.1) and 10th in strikeouts (113) and Jake Collier was eighth in innings pitched (111.1).
Hite is the most decorated pitcher in Cumberland history, earning First Team All-America honors as a senior in 1996. He still holds three NAIA World Series records – most shutouts in a series (2 in 1995), lowest ERA in a Series (0.00 in 1995) and fewest earned runs allowed (0 in 21.1 innings in 1995).
His 13 victories in 1996 was tied for the most in single-season history until two of his protégés, Aaron Wilkerson and Shawn Schaefer, eclipsed the mark in 2010, and Hite’s 30 victories is tied for the most in a career at Cumberland. He also ranks in the Top 10 in 10 other single-season or career pitching records at CU.
The Hermitage, Tenn., native was a member of two NAIA World Series teams, squads that placed second in 1995 and third in 1996, and the Phoenix compiled a mark of 140-56 during his three seasons as a player.
Hite played five years in the Padres organization, the last two in the Southern League at Double-A Mobile (Ala.). He was named the organization’s Pitcher of the Month on three occasions.
Hite received his bachelor’s in Business Administration with a minor in Computer Information Systems from Cumberland in 1996 and garnered his master’s in Education from CU in August 2010. He is married to the former Tracie Tipps of Lebanon, and the couple resides in Mt. Juliet and has one daughter, nine-year-old Katelyn.
Hite's Year-by-Year Coaching Career
|2017||Assistant Coach||Cumberland University||26-29|
|2016||Assistant Coach||Cumberland University||32-27|
|2015||Assistant Coach||Cumberland University||20-31|
|2014||Assistant Coach||Cumberland University||49-20||NAIA World Series champions|
|2013||Assistant Coach||Cumberland University||41-19-1||NAIA Championship Opening Round|
|2012||Assistant Coach||Cumberland University||32-26|
|2011||Assistant Coach||Cumberland University||46-16||NAIA Championship Opening Round|
|2010||Assistant Coach||Cumberland University||58-9||NAIA World Series champions|
|2009||Assistant Coach||Cumberland University||33-25||NAIA Championship Opening Round|
|2008||Assistant Coach||Cumberland University||46-21|
|2007||Assistant Coach||Cumberland University||48-20-1||NAIA World Series|
|2006||Assistant Coach||Cumberland University||51-18||NAIA World Series runner-up|
|2005||Assistant Coach||Trevecca Nazarene||47-16|
|2004||Assistant Coach||Trevecca Nazarene||44-17-1|
|2003||Assistant Coach||Trevecca Nazarene||35-20|
|2002||Assistant Coach||Trevecca Nazarene||28-29|
|2001||Assistant Coach||Cumberland University||50-19|