SLU's Artigues elected to LBCA Hall of Fame
HAMMOND, La. – Southeastern Louisiana Director of Athletics Jay Artigues has been elected to the Louisiana Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame, executive director Tim O'Neal announced this past week.
Joining Artigues in the Class of 2021 are Bob Lemons (St. Amant H.S.), Larry Schneider (Rummel H.S.), Johnny Hoffpauir (Vidalia H.S.), Larry Stegall (Downsville H.S.), John Altobello (DeLaSalle H.S.) and Rick Jones (Tulane).
Inductions will be held at the annual LBCA Convention, slated for Jan. 15-16, 2021.
The new class will join previously inducted members Tony Johns, Dwayne "Beetle" Bailey, Skip Bertman, Micah Harper, Don Boniol, M. L. Woodruff, Reginald Lambright, Jeff Schexnaider, Ronnie Coker, David Moreau, Ron Maestri, Wilbert Ellis and Tony Robichaux.
Artigues served as the head baseball coach at Southeastern from 2006 until taking over as the athletic director following the 2013 season. He compiled a 276-188 on-field record, placing him second on the school's all-time wins list.
Southeastern baseball established itself as a growing force in the region under Artigues, producing three All-Americans, four Freshman All-Americans, a Capital One Academic All-American, the NCBWA National Stopper of the Year, the Southland Conference's Player, Hitter, Relief Pitcher and Freshman of the Year, numerous All-Conference and Southland All-Academic players, as well as Southeastern single-season and career record holders.
He was named the Louisiana Sports Writers Association Co-Coach of the Year in 2010 after Southeastern climbed into the national rankings for the first time at the Division I level. The Lions remained in the polls for eight straight weeks that season, reaching as high as No. 17.
A member of Artigues' first Lion squad, Wade Miley, was a first-round pick of the Arizona Diamondbacks in the 2009 MLB Draft, represented the club in the 2012 MLB All-Star Game and was honored by the Sporting News as their Rookie of the Year for the National League that same season.
Prior to Southeastern, Artigues spent four seasons at Pearl River Community College where he led the Wildcats to three conference championships and an appearance in the JUCO World Series. In his final season at PRCC, Artigues' squad enjoyed a No. 1 ranking in the final JUCO regular-season poll.
Before returning to Pearl River in 2001, where he was a two-year letter winner along with a first team All-State and All-Region selection, Artigues spent three seasons at Bossier Parish Community College. During his final season, he led the Cavaliers to a school-record 46 wins and a No. 8 ranking in the final NJCAA poll.
Artigues began his coaching career in 1992-93 as an assistant at Spring Hill College in Mobile, Alabama, working with the team's hitters and infielders. He has also served as Dean of Students and head baseball coach at St. Louis Catholic High School in Lake Charles, La., leading the Saints to the 1996 Class 2A state quarterfinals.
Initially moving to Hammond in 1996, Artigues served as athletic director and head baseball coach at St. Thomas Aquinas High School. He led the Falcons to the 1997 state playoffs before returning to the collegiate ranks, accepting a job at UNO as the volunteer assistant coach on Tom Schwaner's 1998 staff.
The native of Bay St. Louis, Mississippi has previously been inducted into the St. Stanislaus Great Wall of Rocks (2007), the Pearl River Community College Athletics Hall of Fame (2009) and the Mississippi Community College Sports Hall of Fame (2017).
Following Artigues' promotion to athletic director, he handed over the reins of the Southeastern baseball program to Matt Riser. A former player for both Artigues and Jones, as well as a member of Artigues' coaching staff for six seasons, Riser credits both as major influences in his life.
"I owe so much of my career to both of these men," Riser said. "It's hard to put into words what they mean to me personally. There are only a few men in this world who've molded me into what I am today and both of them have had a huge impact on me. Jay gave me a vision of a future with baseball. I always loved his quote in the recruiting pitch. 'You can have academics for the rest of your life, you only get one shot to make the best of your baseball career.' It was the perfect blend of not rushing through my academics but also needing to make the most of my four years of baseball.
"I didn't know if I would find another Jay Artigues in my life after I left junior college, but boy did I get lucky finding Coach Jones," Riser said. "I'll never forget his recruiting pitch. 'You look at it and ask yourself the question, do you want to work for a great company or own that company one day? Both are good scenarios but only one is the best.' I've learned so much about being compassionate for others through coach. These two men have been huge mentors for me in my career and most importantly in my life. I feel the only way to repay them is to do the same for the next generation. I pray every day I'm making them proud of what we are doing here at Southeastern. For both of these men to go into the same Hall of Fame class is such a blessing. I can promise you I will be there for their induction."