Former Louisville captain Lucas hired as assistant

Consider this the second time Chris Lemonis has recruited Zach Lucas.

Lemonis brought Lucas to Louisville as a highly-touted freshman infielder in 2011. Now, as Indiana’s coach, Lemonis is bringing Lucas to Bloomington as an assistant coach.

Lemonis on Thursday announced the addition of Lucas, who replaces former volunteer assistant Matt Reida on IU’s staff.

Lucas comes to Indiana after spending the past two seasons as an assistant at East Tennessee State.

“He played a significant role in helping the Buccaneers’ offense climb to a .309 average in 2017 and a .307 average in 2016,” Lemonis said in a statement. “He’ll have an opportunity to work with our infielders and our hitters while he’s here. We are excited to have him; he knows our system and he knows our style. Zach will be a great fit for Indiana Baseball.”

Lucas served as a volunteer assistant at ETSU in 2016 before getting promoted to a full-time role this past season, working primarily with the Buccaneers’ hitters, outfielders and baserunners.

At Louisville, Lucas was a four-year letterwinner and a two-time team captain. He started 184 of the 206 games he played for the Cardinals, helping the program to two appearances in the College World Series

“I am extremely excited and grateful for the opportunity that Coach Lemonis has given me to work with this great baseball program,” Lucas said in a statement. “I have the utmost respect for Coach Lemonis after playing for him and couldn’t be happier to be on the other side of things now, working for him. I am excited to get started and look forward to working with Coach Lemonis, Coach (Kyle Cheesebrough), Coach (Kyle) Bunn, and for Indiana University.”

Reida recently accepted an assistant position at Xavier.

“We are excited that Matt Reida was able to take an opportunity at Xavier,” Lemonis said. “It is a great step for him as he moves toward a bright future in his coaching career. We appreciate everything that he brought to our program in his two years here.”

Miller doesn’t sign with Twins
The signing deadline for Major League Baseball has passed with Indiana third baseman Luke Miller opting to retain his college eligibility.

Miller did not sign with the Minnesota Twins, who selected him in the 31st round of last month’s MLB First-Year Player Draft, allowing him to return to IU for his junior season in 2018.

With a big year, the Muncie native has an opportunity to get drafted much earlier next summer. Miller batted .284 with 11 doubles and 10 home runs this past season, while stringing together a streak of 23 consecutive games having reached base.

Currently, Miller is batting .304 with two home runs and six RBIs in the prestigious Cape Cod League.