Ryan Folmar, ORU Head Baseball Coach
Ryan Folmar begins year 12 as the head baseball coach at Oral Roberts University in 2024 with a career record of 371-224 (.624) and a six-time Summit League Coach of the Year (2015, '16, '17, '18, '21, '23). Prior to being tabbed the head coach in 2013, Folmar served on the ORU coaching staff as an assistant for nine seasons.
In his tenure, Folmar has guided the Golden Eagles to six Summit League Regular Season/Tournament championships, six NCAA Regional appearances, one NCAA Super Regional appearance and one NCAA College World Series appearance. As the head coach, Folmar has overseen the development of five Summit League Players of the Year, six Newcomers of the Year, seven Pitchers of the Year, eight All-Americans, 25 MLB Draft picks and 92 all-conference selections.
In his 11th season at the helm in 2023, Folmar led the Golden Eagles to a 52-14 record and their first College World Series appearance since 1978. The 52 victories were a new program record (DI-era) and marked the first 50-win season since 2004. In its final 48 games, ORU went 42-6 and set a program record (DI-era) with 21 consecutive wins from April 23-June 4. The Golden Eagles also went a perfect 6-0 against midweek foes Oklahoma State and Wichita State, marking the first time they have accomplished the feat since 2006.
Folmar, who was tabbed the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) Mike Martin National Coach of the Year, guided ORU to its 20th Summit League Regular Season title, 21st Summit League Tournament Championship, 30th NCAA Regional appearance and a No. 5 national ranking (Collegiate Baseball), which matches the highest in program history. The ORU skipper coached a Summit League best 13 All-League members, including the Player/Newcomer of the Year Jonah Cox, Pitcher of the Year Cade Denton and Defensive Player of the Year Mac McCroskey.
Under Folmar's tutelage, ORU had a trio of players named All-Americans (Cox, Denton and Matt Hogan) for the first time since 1999. Denton, who was named the NCBWA Stopper of the Year, became only the third player in program history to earn All-America honors in back-to-back seasons. Cox and Denton also became the first Golden Eagles since Mark Serrano in 2009 to earn multiple All-America honors in a single season.
ORU led the League in 23 different statistical categories, while ranking in the top 10 nationally in fielding percentage (1st), win/loss percentage (2nd), hits (2nd), batting average (7th), ERA (7th), WHIP (7th) and runs (9th). The Golden Eagles finished the season as the only team in the country ranked inside the top 10 in batting average, ERA and fielding percentage. Under the development of Folmar, Cox, who was a semifinalist for the Dick Howser Trophy, led the nation in hits and set the program and Summit League single-season record with 114.
Against ranked foes in 2023, Folmar guided ORU to a 7-3 record. The Golden Eagles entered the Top 25 (Collegiate Baseball) for the first time since 2011 on May 1 and finished the season ranked in the Top 10 for the first time since 1983.
On June 4, 2023, Folmar moved into second all-time in program history for wins as ORU defeated No. 14 Dallas Baptist, 6-5, to claim the Stillwater Regional.
In 2022, the Golden Eagles returned to an NCAA Regional for the first time since 2018 after capturing their 20th Summit League Championship. Folmar guided ORU to a 38-20 overall record and coached nine All-Summit League players, including the 2022 Pitcher of the Year Ledgend Smith. The Golden Eagles finished the season as the only program with road wins over multiple top 3 opponents and one of only two teams to have recorded victories over the two College World Series finalists (Ole Miss and OU).
ORU got hot in the final month of the season going 12-4 in May en route to the 26th conference tournament championship in program history. On May 2, 2022, Folmar led the Golden Eagles to a 7-3 road win at Air Force, marking the 2,000th victory in program history.
On April 15, 2022, Folmar picked up his 300th career victory with a 6-4 win at Western Illinois, becoming the fourth head coach in program history to reach the milestone.
In 2021, the Golden Eagles returned to the top of the Summit League standings to claim the league's regular season championship. After posting a 31-23 record overall and 19-7 Summit League record, Folmar had clamied another Coach of the Year accolade given by league peers. The Golden Eagles got hot in the month of March after taking two of three at No. 8 LSU and at Dallas Baptist in back-to-back weekends. To close out the regular season, ORU won eight of its last 10 games to claim the regular season title.
Folmar led the Golden Eagles to their 18th-consecutive regular season title and the program's 19th-straight tournament title as members of The Summit League in 2018 posting a 38-20 overall record on his way to being named Summit League Coach of the Year. ORU advanced to the NCAA Regionals for the 28th time in its history. Coach Folmar picked up his first-ever NCAA victory in 2017, a 14-6 win over in-state rival Oklahoma State in an elimination game.
The Golden Eagles swept The Summit League's postseason awards again in 2018 as Noah Cummings (Player of the Year) and Miguel Ausua (Pitcher of the Year) landed the awards for the second-straight year. Riley Keizor joined the group being named Newcomer of the Year by the conference.
Dylan Snypes (Newcomer of the Year) was honored with Cummings and Ausua by The Summit League in winning postseason awards in 2017. Ausua and Cummings went on to be named to the 2017 NCBWA All-America Team becoming the first ORU players since 2015 to earn the distinction, while Matt Whatley was tabbed as the Johnny Bench Award winner as the nation's best collegiate catcher.
On March 10, 2020, Folmar became the fourth coach in ORU history to reach 250 career wins with a 2-0 shutout against Missouri State. Folmar collected the 200th win of his ORU tenure April 21, 2018, with an 8-1 decision against South Dakota State becoming the fifth coach in program history to reach the milestone. He won game No. 100 against Little Rock March 4, 2016, getting a 14-5 win over the Trojans.
In 2016, ORU went 38-21 on its way to Summit League regular season and tournament championships before an appearance in the NCAA Regionals. The Golden Eagles finished the regular season with a 4-1 record against teams from the Big 12 with wins over Oklahoma, Kansas State and a home-and-home sweep of Oklahoma State, and added road wins over SEC members Auburn and Mississippi State.
The 2015 season served as a defining year for Folmar, leading the Golden Eagles to their first postseason appearance in three seasons finishing with a 41-16 record overall while dominating The Summit League with a 25-5 record. The Golden Eagles fared especially well against the Big 12, finishing the year 5-1 against the conference after defeating Oklahoma, No. 12 Texas Tech and No. 10 Oklahoma State on the road, and downing the Cowboys and Red Raiders at J.L. Johnson Stadium.
Anthony Sequeria and Matt Whatley led the charge in 2015 as Sequeria was named a finalist for the prestigious John Olerud Award, given to the nation's top two-way player, while Whatley was selected as a Freshman All-America from four publications, including Perfect Game USA, Collegiate Baseball, D1Baseball.com and Baseball America.
In 2014, Folmar led the Golden Eagles to a 30-26 overall record, with a 15-15 mark in Southland Conference play, including a home victory over No. 8 Oklahoma State and a two-game season sweep against No. 28 Oklahoma.
In his first season as the skipper, the Golden Eagles finished two wins shy of a Southland Conference Tournament championship, completing the season with a 25-32 overall record. ORU finished third in the league with a 16-11 record, including the program's first-ever, three-game sweep of a ranked opponent when the Golden Eagles took three against No. 23 Central Arkansas.
In Folmar’s first season, Alex Gonzalez finished second in the NCAA in strikeouts with 126, helping him to Second Team All-America honors by Perfect Game. Gonzalez went on to be drafted No. 23 overall by the Texas Rangers in the 2013 MLB First-Year Player Draft.
Before taking the reins as head coach at ORU, Folmar spent the previous nine seasons developing a reputation as one of the finest hitting instructors in all of college baseball. The Golden Eagles won the Summit League Championship in each of Folmar’s nine seasons on the staff, advancing to NCAA Regional play each season.
The Golden Eagles advanced to the Super Regional round of the NCAA Tournament in 2006, finishing the season ranked in the top 25 in every major college baseball poll. Folmar’s offense was the backbone of the squad, finishing in the top 20 nationally in batting average, runs scored and slugging percentage.
Folmar tutored freshman third baseman Trevino into one of the finest young players in college baseball, as the rookie earned Summit League Newcomer of the Year honors and two freshman All-America nods in 2012.
Folmar joined the Golden Eagles after spending five seasons (1999-2003) as Director of Baseball Operations at Oklahoma State. At OSU, Folmar handled various administrative duties, including the Cowboy baseball camps and served as the color voice on OSU radio broadcasts for three years.
A four-year letter winner at Oklahoma State from 1994-97, Folmar earned honorable mention All-Big 8 honors as a sophomore in 1995 and helped lead the Cowboys to the 1996 College World Series. Following his playing days with the Cowboys, the Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, native spent two seasons in the Colorado Rockies organization.
Folmar and his wife Kay Lynn have three children; Kade, Reese and Luke.
Tim Johnson, ORU Athletic Director
Tim Johnson joined the ORU staff prior to the 2015-16 school year from Clemson University.
Athletic programs have seen tremendous success and growth under Johnson.
Men’s Basketball achieved a Sweet 16 run in the NCAA Tournament and Summit League Championship in 2021 and had their best regular season in history in 2022-2023 with 30 wins, an undefeated conference season, and the highest seed ever earned by a Summit League team in the NCAA tournament.
The Baseball team also recently completed a historic run to Omaha and the College World Series, the first in 45 years. The team had their best regular season in ORU history, going undefeated in conference while winning the Stillwater Regional (wins over Oklahoma State, Washington, and DBU). The team then went on to beat Oregon twice to advance to the CWS, beating TCU in the opening game.
Men’s Soccer has won 3 of the last 4 Championships while Golf and Track have won multiple championships.
Fan and student engagement have also grown to record levels. Basketball attendance is up over 600% while The Mabee Center was named the “Best Basketball Atmosphere” in Oklahoma in back-to-back years. Student attendance is at the highest levels since the 1970’s and the section was named one of the best in the country.
In his time at ORU, the Golden Eagle Club has increased its membership by over 500% percent, achieved its highest fundraising totals, highest annual levels, and premium seating sales across all sports.
He has directed the design, build, and funding of a new 50,000 square-foot athletic center on campus and renovated Mabee Center. He has also directed renovations of the baseball stadium, men’s basketball locker room, men’s and women’s soccer locker rooms, volleyball locker room, installation of infield baseball turf and the construction of ORU’s first track and tennis complex on campus.
Johnson negotiated a department-wide Nike contract that more than quadrupled the value received by the department and also led the charge to update ORU’s athletic logo and brand.
Prior to ORU, as an Assistant A.D., Johnson served on Athletic Director Terry Don Phillips’ senior staff and acted as a sport supervisor – where he was heavily involved in building Clemson Football under Coach Dabo Swinney. The Clemson Football program won its first ACC Title in 20 years in 2011 and went on to win a National Championship in 2017. Johnson assisted in bowl preparation for multiple bowl games, including the Meineke Car Care Bowl, Orange Bowl, and Chick-fil-a Bowl.
He also supervised aspects of compliance, marketing, and all departmental contracts for the Tigers. Johnson helped develop the Clemson Athletics strategic plan and developed Safety and Security plans for Clemson Athletic Venues as part of Clemson’s Risk Management Committee. In addition, he aided in Clemson’s Billion Dollar Campaign “Will to Lead/Will to Win” in association with Clemson’s Vice President for Development and Alumni Relations, Brian O’Rourke. Through his involvement with IPTAY, Johnson promoted membership, helped with fundraising strategies, and was active on capital campaign committees.
Prior to Clemson, Johnson graduated from the University of Arkansas with both a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (2005) and a Juris Doctor (2008) and practiced law in Fayetteville. During his time at Arkansas, Johnson worked on Coach Houston Nutt’s football staff from 2002 to 2007, appearing in two SEC Championship games and four bowl games. He received his MBA from Clemson University in 2014.
Johnson is a member of the Arkansas Bar, Arkansas Bar Association, American Bar Association, and The University of Arkansas Letterwinners Association (A Club).
Johnson married the former Brittany Arnold of Fayetteville, Arkansas. They live in Tulsa and have two daughters, Emelia and Eleanor, and a son, George Peyton.