Jim Duffy is in his first season as an assistant coach for the Scarlet Knights after being hired on July 28, 2017. An All-American first baseman during his playing days at Seton Hall, Duffy spent the last six seasons as the head coach at Manhattan.
"Jim is a great addition and brings a ton of experience to our staff," Litterio said upon the hire. "He is a high-character guy and is a tireless worker who knows what it takes to be successful. I know Jim saw the vision and potential of what this staff could do together in the Big Ten and nationally."
"I'm honored and thrilled to be joining the Rutgers baseball staff, team and RU community," Duffy said. "I want to thank our AD Pat Hobbs and coach Litterio for making this tremendous opportunity a reality for me and my family. I'm excited about representing Rutgers baseball at a high level, giving the program my very best energy and effort each day, and helping the players reach their maximum potential both on and off the field."
In his six seasons leading Manhattan, Duffy guided the program to 134 wins, four Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) Tournament appearances and the 2012 MAAC Championship. Fourteen of his players earned All-MAAC status, including three following the 2017 season. In addition, the Jaspers saw pitcher Tom Cosgrove selected in the 12th round of the most recent MLB Draft by the San Diego Padres and shortstop Jose Carrera signed by the New York Yankees.
Duffy made a splash in his first year as skipper, leading Manhattan to the MAAC Championship in 2012 and a berth to NCAA Regionals. The team traveled to the Columbia Regional to face two-time defending national champion South Carolina. The run capped a season that saw the Jaspers win 33 games, including posting an 18-6 conference record en route to claiming the MAAC regular season title. In 2016, both MAAC Player of the Year Christian Santisteban and MAAC Rookie of the Year Fabian Pena garnered Louisville Slugger All-America honors.
Duffy mentored five All-MAAC first team selections in 2012 and oversaw the development of Anthony Vega, who was drafted by the Baltimore Orioles following his junior year in the 30th round of the MLB Draft. The landmark campaign also featured the only undefeated home record in the Division I ranks as the program recorded a perfect 18-0 mark at Van Cortlandt Park.
Prior to becoming a head coach, Duffy started his coaching career by spending seven seasons as an assistant coach at Seton Hall, his alma mater, on the same staff as current Rutgers pitching coach Phil Cundari. That started in 2001 when the Pirates won their first Big East championship since 1987. In 2003, he was promoted to full-time assistant coach. Duffy worked primarily with the Pirates' hitters and outfielders while also assisting with recruiting, scouting and team travel. Nine of Duffy's players eventually moved on to professional baseball careers.
A 1996 Seton Hall graduate, Duffy was a four-year starter at first base for the Pirates. He appears throughout the program record books, ranking second all-time in hits (247), second in defensive putouts (1,347), fifth in runs scored (165), fifth in at bats (709) and ninth in games played (200). A three-time All-Big East selection, Duffy was named New Jersey College Player of the Year and earned All-America honors after finishing ninth in the nation with a .429 batting average in 1995. The average also has Duffy tied for fifth with Mo Vaughn in the Pirates' single-season record books. The following season, he had a school-record 29-game hitting streak and served as team captain.
In 1997, he signed a free agent contract with the Houston Astros. He was an outfielder in the Astros system for four years, advancing as high as Double-A before retiring in 2000 to pursue a coaching career.
Duffy and his wife Danielle are the proud parents of three children (daughter Jadan 8, sons Brennan 6 and John 1) and reside in Hazlet, New Jersey.