IOWA CITY, Iowa — Longtime Iowa high school softball coach Rick Dillinger has been named assistant coach for the University of Iowa softball program, head coach Renee Gillispie announced Thursday.
Dillinger joins the Hawkeyes after 42 years as a high school softball coach at three schools, where he also coached girls’ basketball.
“I am blessed to have the opportunity to join Coach Gillispie and her staff as a softball coach at the University of Iowa,” Dillinger said. “The process of young women winning, graduating, and doing it the right way excites me.”
“We are very fortunate to bring on one of the top coaches in Iowa,” Gillispie said. “His knowledge and passion for the game along with his Iowa connections, make Rick the ideal choice.”
Dillinger holds a 1,165-551 record as a softball coach, winning three state championships, 13 conference titles, nine sectional championships, 11 district championships, and appearing in 12 Iowa State Softball Tournaments as a head coach at Adel-DeSoto-Minburn, North Polk Community, and Danville Community School. Dillinger coached Gillispie at Danville Community School from 1976-79.
Dillinger has won numerous softball coaching accolades, including National Softball Coach of the Year (2004), District Softball Coach of the Year (1986, 1987, 2005, 2006, 2014, 2015, 2018) by the Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union (IGHSAU) and Iowa Girls Coaches Association (IGCA), Softball Coach of the Year (1979, 1987, 2002, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2014). He is a member of the Upper Iowa University Hall of Fame, and IGCA Hall of Fame.
As a member of the IGCA, Dillinger has served as president (1995-96), vice president (1989-1994), secretary (1988-89), and state softball chair (1988-1994). Dillinger currently sits on the IGCA Hall of Fame Committee for basketball and softball, the IGHSAU Softball Hall of Fame Committee, and the Softball Rules Committee.