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The Quinnipiac Chronicle

The Student News Site of Quinnipiac University

The Quinnipiac Chronicle

Quinnipiac baseball retires former player, manager Dan Gooley’s No. 15

Nicholas Pestritto
Director of Operations Dan Gooley gives a speech during his number retirement ceremony at the Quinnipiac baseball field on April 7.

Fifty-eight years.

That’s how long ago Dan Gooley dressed in Quinnipiac baseball’s navy and gold for the first time.

All these decades later, “Skip” was able to see his No. 15 retired ahead of the Bobcats’ series finale against Iona on Sunday.

“I was thinking about my freshman year when I started here in 1966,” Gooley said in his honoree speech. “And in my wildest
dreams, I would never think that in 2024 I’m going to be standing here and have my number retired.”

Gooley is the second Bobcat to have his number retired in any program by Quinnipiac Athletics, with former basketball player Frank “Porky” Vieira’s No. 44 being the first.

“He has 2,600 points,” Gooley said of Vieira’s program scoring record, which still stands today. “The other thing that people don’t realize about Frank Vieira is he’s the winningest basketball coach in New England. I felt like I hadn’t done anything that compared to him. That’s why he called me, he wanted to be here today.”

And sure enough, Vieira was there, sitting “shoulder-to-shoulder” among Gooley’s friends.

“I’m going to stand with all of my former players and coaches that are here,” Gooley said. “Men that have dedicated their college careers here and their passion to be the best players they could, to be the best civilians, be the best students they could, and to turn around and stand shoulder-to-shoulder with them. It’s an honor and I’m very proud of that today.”

In four seasons as a Bobcat, Gooley set the program’s career strikeout record (316) and ranks second all-time in ERA (2.47).

Gooley’s No. 15 is unveiled on the right field wall at the newly-renovated Quinnipiac baseball field on April 7. (Nicholas Pestritto)

The ace returned to Hamden in 1977, this time as the Bobcats’ head man. He was inducted into the Quinnipiac Athletics Hall of Fame in 1983 — halfway through his first coaching stretch with the Bobcats. Gooley led Division II Quinnipiac to 205 wins, reaching three NCAA Tournament berths and one College World Series before leaving in 1987.

Fifteen years later, Gooley rejoined the Bobcats’ squad and managed the team to four successive 20-win seasons from 2004-2007.

In 24 seasons as Quinnipiac’s skipper, Gooley earned 430 wins — third-most of all Quinnipiac head coaches, trailing men’s hockey’s Rand Pecknold (641) and women’s basketball’s Tricia Fabbri (516).

And if two coaching stints weren’t enough for Gooley, he returned in 2022 as the director of operations.

“There are hundreds of guys he’s touched throughout his career here, while he’s a coach here, while he’s with me here as the director of operations here with the guys in the dugout,” current head coach John Delaney said, who replaced Gooley in 2015.

But why keep coming back?

“It’s fun,” Gooley said. “I love it because it’s fun. It’s a challenge, I mean you know you’re either safe or you’re out. It’s
either a ball or a strike. What else do you want to do in life if you don’t play baseball?”

Fifty-eight years later, Gooley continues to be romantic about Quinnipiac baseball.

“You don’t find many people that when they wake up on Christmas Day, (who) calls 50 guys that played under him just to wish them a Merry Christmas,” Delaney said. “That’s the type of person (Gooley) is and the relationships he’s built.”

Following the Bobcats’ 6-4 win over the Gaels, the veteran knows it’s not time to throw in the towel with a postseason berth
in the balance.

“We’re not knocked out,” Gooley said. “We’re in the center of the ring. We’re ready to go to the next fight and we’ll be there.”

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Amanda Dronzek
Amanda Dronzek, Sports Editor

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  • K

    Kerry DonovanApr 11, 2024 at 1:00 pm

    Job well done as always Skip!!!

  • C

    Curt AndrewsApr 10, 2024 at 8:41 am

    Congratulations Skip! Well deserved!