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Lelo Prado
Position: Head Coach
Alma Mater: Tampa
Graduating Year: 1985
Experience: 8 Years
Phone: (813)974-2504
Email: leloprado@usf.edu
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Prado Videos
Lelo Prado Bio
Page 1 2
Courtesy: USF
Release: 02/21/2012

 

Lelo Prado took over as the Bulls' head baseball coach in June of 2006.  A native of Cuba, Prado  who grew up in Tampa before embarking on an ultra-successful college coaching career that includes back-to-back NCAA Division II National

Prado's Career Break Down
USF 2007- P (7 years)
Head Coach, 224-183
Six BIG EAST tournament appearances
Five 30-win seasons
Louisville - 1995-2006 (11 years)
Head Coach, 320-301-1
One NCAA appearance
11 C-USA tournament appearances
Seven 30-win seasons
University of Tampa - 1989-1995 (7 years)
Head Coach, 278-124-1
1993 NCAA D-II National Championship
1992 NCAA D-II National Championship
Three D-II World Series appearances
University of Tampa - 1986-88 (2 years)
Assistant Coach
Hillsborough CC - Assistant Coach
1985 (1 year)
NCAA Postseason Appearances
Tampa (D-II): Seven(1989-1995)
Louisville: One (2002)

Championships in his hometown, r became the fifth head coach in the USF baseball program's history.

Now in his eighth (2013-14) season at the helm of the USF Baseball program and armed with a new stadium, the Bulls' are primed to become the championship-caliber team that Prado envisioned when he returned home. 

In his seven seasons, Prado, who has worn the No. 1 on his back at all three of his coaching stops, has laid the ground work of an American title contending team that came up just a hair short in 2009, 2011, 2012 and 2013 and has produced five BIG EAST Championship appearances.

He has led USF to 224 wins in his first seven years in Tampa, posting five 30-win seasons. With 822 career wins, Prado ranks in the top 50 among active coaches in wins.

After his fifth 30-win season in green and gold, he led USF to new heights in 2013 when the Bulls were ranked as high as no. 20 in national polls. Adding his second Big East Rookie of the Year in Jimmy Herget as well as five named to All-Big East teams.  In 2012, the Bulls fell just shorts of a BIG EAST tournament title and NCAA bid.

In 2009, Prado had the Bulls on the doorstep of claiming their first BIG EAST regular season Championship but came up a half game short. Prado becomes a first-time winner of the BIG EAST Coach of the Year award in 2009 after leading USF to a 34-25 overall record and an 18-9 mark in the BIG EAST, improving by four places from last year's sixth-place finish. It marks the fifth conference coach of the year honor for Prado, who was the 2002 Conference USA Coach of the Year while serving as head coach at Louisville and was the Sunshine State Conference Coach of the Year three times while head coach at Division II Tampa.

In 2008, Prado coached a pair of Freshman All-Americans in outfielder Ryan Lockwood and utility player Stephen Hunt. Three Bulls from the 2008 squad were selected in the MLB Draft - Addison Maruszak, Daniel Thomas and David Torcise - as well as seven recruits from the 2009 class.

In his first season with the Bulls, Prado led the squad into the Final Four of the 2007 BIG EAST Conference Championship, completing his inaugural USF campaign with a 36-24 record and a 13-14 conference clip.

Prado earned his 600th career win just two games into his rookie year at USF, and now holds a 786-161-2 mark in 23 years as a collegiate head coach.

Four Bulls from his squad were selected in the 2007 Major League Baseball Draft, with picks coming in the 21st, 38th, 44th and 48th rounds.

In 2007 he coached three BIG EAST all-conference players as well as five College Baseball Foundation National Players of the Week and seven players who earned nine weekly league awards.

Prado led the team to a 9-0 start, which boosted the Bulls in to the national spotlight. At the end of February, College Baseball News ranked USF No. 30 in their national weekly poll and the Bulls received votes in the USA Today/ESPN and National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association polls.

Prado's Year-by-Year Results
Year
School
Record  
Postseason
1989
Tampa
37-18-1
South Region Finalist
1990
Tampa
45-14
NCAA World Series
1991
Tampa
34-17
South Region Finalist
1992
Tampa
42-19
NCAA National Champion
1993
Tampa
43-21
NCAA National Champion
1994
Tampa
36-18
South Region Finalist
1995
Tampa
41-17
South Region Finalist
1996
Louisville 
18-36
C-USA Tournament
1997
Louisville 
23-32
C-USA Tournament
1998
Louisville 
31-24
C-USA Tournament 
1999
Louisville 
37-19
C-USA Tournament
2000
Louisville 
17-37-1
C-USA Tournament
2001
Louisville 
32-29
C-USA Tournament
2002
Louisville 
39-18
NCAA Regional
2003
Louisville 
34-23
C-USA Tournament
2004
Louisville 
26-30
C-USA Tournament
2005
Louisville 
32-24
C-USA Tournament
2006
Louisville 
31-29
BIG EAST Tournament
2007
USF
34-26
BIG EAST Tournament
2008
USF
31-27
BIG EAST Tournament
2009
USF
34-26
BIG EASTTournament
2010
USF
26-31
BIG EAST Tournament 
2011
USF
25-29
DNQ for BIG EAST Tournament
2012
USF
38-29
BIG EAST Runners Up
2013
USF
36-22
BIG EAST Tournament
Total 24 Years 822-608-2  
Prado joined USF from the University of Louisville, where in 11 seasons he became that school's all-time winningest coach with 320 victories. He lead the Cardinals to its first ever NCAA Tournament appearance. In addition to his first year at USF, his 19 seasons as a head coach include seven at the University of Tampa and 11 at the University of Louisville. A proven winner, Prado has collected two Division II National Championships (1992, 1993), eight NCAA appearances and three Division II World Series appearances. At Louisville, he took the program to its first-ever NCAA appearance in 2002 and he was the 2002 Conference USA Coach of the Year, the same year he won USA Baseball Coach of the Year honors.

During his time at Louisville, Prado compiled more wins than any other coach in Cardinal history. He surpassed Dr. John Heldman Jr. (309) when he registered win No. 310 on May 7, 2006 (a 9-6 win over the No. 8-ranked Notre Dame Fighting Irish). The Cardinals closed the 2006 season with a 12-game winning streak before falling in the championship game of the BIG EAST Conference Championship, posting a 31-29 record with a third-place regular season finish (17-10) in the team's initial year in the BIG EAST.

Prado guided the Cardinals to 11-consecutive conference tournament appearances, including 10-straight in Conference USA, as Louisville was one of three teams in the league that advanced to the C-USA Tournament in each of conference's first 10 seasons, joining Southern Miss and Tulane.

He was the only coach in Louisville baseball history to record more than two 30-win seasons, tallying seven (31 in '98, 37 in '99, 32 in '01, 39 in '02, 34 in '03, 32 in '05 and 31 in '06).

Under Prado, the team earned its first-ever postseason appearance in 2002, advancing to the NCAA Regional in Atlanta, Ga. Prado led UofL to a single-season record 39 wins in 2002, as well as an all-time best conference record of 21-9, placing second. During the 2002 season, Prado also guided the USA Baseball National Team as its head coach, the first coach in C-USA history to do so, leading the collegiate amateur squad to a 23-7 record, and a silver medal at the first-ever FISU World University Baseball Championships in Messina, Italy. The team also captured the gold medal at the Haarlem Baseball Week in Haarlem, The Netherlands, and defeated the Japanese Collegiate All-Stars three games to two, in the 31st annual USA/Japan Collegiate Championship Series.

In 2000, he was one of three assistant coaches on the under-22 USA National Team, which posted an all-time best 27-3-1 record and featured college stars like Mark Teixeira, Mark Prior, Xavier Nady and fellow C-USA member Jake Gautreau. Prado served on the USA Baseball selection committee from 1995-1998 and helped select the '96 Olympic bronze medal winning squad.

During his 11 years at Louisville, Prado saw 20 players (Matt Berger, Danny Haas, James McAuley, Jorge Maduro, Mike Davis, Brian Bentley, Sean Green, Chad Petty, Justin Woodrow, Bill Gatti Jr., Key Voshell, Adam Haley, Grant Williams, Josh Bolen, Carlos Fernandez, Ron Braun, Mark Jurich, Scott Barber, J.T. LaFountain and Brian Halford) make the pro ranks.

Before he was hired at Louisville in June of 1995, Prado spent seven seasons as the head coach at the University of Tampa. In his seven seasons at Tampa, Prado compiled a 278-124-1 record, the winningest record in UT's history, averaging nearly 40 wins per season. His .691 winning percentage ranks among the top 10 in Division II history. In addition to the two national championships, his teams also reached the College World Series in 1990, finishing third, and were an NCAA South Region finalist in each of his other four seasons as head coach (1989, 1991, 1994 and 1995).

He was named the ABCA National Coach of the Year in 1992 and 1993, and he was the South Region Coach of the Year in 1990, 1992 and 1993. He also won conference coach of the year in 1989, 1990 and 1995 and was inducted into the Sunshine State Conference Hall of Fame in 1995. His No. 1 jersey is retired at Tampa.

Prado coached 17 first or second team All-America selections at Tampa, including national player of the year Sam Militello in 1990, two Academic All-Americans, 43 All-South Region picks and 32 All-Sunshine State Conference Selections.

During his tenure at Tampa, seven Spartans were drafted by major league clubs, nine of whom played pro ball and four have reached the major leagues, including Tino Martinez (Yankees), Jeff Carter (Chicago White Sox), Ozzie Timmons (Chicago Cubs) and Militello (Yankees).

Prado served as Assistant Director of Athletics at Tampa, focusing on fundraising and community support coordination. Prado has also worked with the Nicaraguan National Baseball Team.

After playing two seasons at Hillsborough Community College, he completed his college career at Tampa in 1985, where he earned a bachelor's degree in adult fitness.

He was an assistant coach at Hillsborough one year (1985) before accepting a similar position at Tampa, where he worked as an assistant for three seasons (1986-88) prior to his advancement as the Spartans' head coach. His first coaching experience was leading the District VI All-Stars to the 1982 Big League World Series.

As a sophomore in high school, Prado was the catcher on Tampa Catholic's state championship team in 1979. During his senior campaign in 1981, he batted .504 on his way to All-Hillsborough County honors.

Prado and his wife, Pam, have three sons, Jason (USF '12), Tyler and Zach.
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