The Texas Longhorns have one of the most prolific Softball programs in the country. While they don’t have a national championship to their resume, they have a storied tradition of winning, which includes five Women’s College World Series appearances.
The program has been to the NCAA tournament in all but three years, since its inception in 1997. They’ve won roughly 69% percent of their games. They’ve finished under .500 just twice. In 2020, before COVID-19 robbed us of all sports, they were ranked third in the USA TODAY/NFCA Poll with a 24-3 record.
Mike White, in just his second season in Austin, has created a dominant force, holding a 70-20 record at Texas. His winning ways can be attributed to his coaching competence and exceptional recruiting capabilities. White was previously head coach at Oregon and won nearly 80% of his games. He was a three-time PAC-12 coach of the year.
While the COVID-19 virus abruptly put an end to a promising season for White’s Longhorns, the future still looks bright. White is recruiting at an elite level and continues to secure talent from the best in the nation. One of these athletes is Ryleigh White.
White is currently a senior at Immaculate Heart Academy in New Jersey. Her first visit was to coach Mike White in Oregon when she was in eighth grade. She ultimately committed to the University of Tennessee to be closer to home. When coach White made the switch to the Longhorns, Ryleigh White followed suit.
“I de-committed from the University of Tennessee and committed to Texas for the huge opportunity to play for and learn from Coach Mike White,” White said. “I am so excited to play with the best. It doesn’t get any better than Coach Spencer, Coach Singleton, and Coach White.”
Ryleigh White is a 6’1” right-handed pitcher and she has been a machine for the Blue Eagles at Immaculate Heart Academy. She hit over .400 in each of her first three seasons, for a total of 93 RBI’s in just 100 hits with 29 home runs. Those numbers are all outstanding, but she’s known mainly as an ace on the mound.
In her high school career, she has an earned run average under 1. During her junior season, she went an incredible 20-2 with an ERA of 0.67 and 277 strikeouts. She allowed just 40 hits in 136 innings pitched.
For the past four years White has also been traveling to California to play with her club team, the A’s of Mercado/Smith.
Most recently they won the PGF 18U National Championship. During that run, she went 3-0 with 19 strikeouts and had an ERA of 0.00.
“My personal success comes from my discipline, determination, and upbringing. I was raised that nothing in this life comes for free and that I have to put the work in to reach my goals. I have been fortunate to be surrounded with an awesome support group of my family, my pitching coach Frank Pelicanni, my hitting coach Phil Delgado, my personal trainer John Wilkins and my PT Dominic Cerreto,” White said. “A huge part of my development and success has come from the last 4 years, I leave New Jersey for the summer and move to California to play and train with Athletics Mercado. This allows me to play with and against the best players in the country. I believe this plays a huge role in preparing me both mentally and physically for Texas.”
Ryleigh White is going to be an important component to what Mike White and the Longhorns have built and continue to build in Austin. Whether she’s on the mound or in the batter’s box, she is at all times a threat to wreak havoc.
“My goals for my time at the University of Texas are to improve every day and do all I can to help this team bring a National Championship to Texas,” White said. “I hope to do this not only in the circle but at the plate as well. I plan on excelling in the classroom and working to the high standards expected of a UT student-athlete.”
“UT fans should know that I’m a true Jersey girl, born and raised. I have an awesome older sister Schyler who is a collegiate volleyball player, a mom who I cherish and admire who works with children with Autism and my father who is a Captain of his police department and the person I credit my work ethic too. I also have a Bengal cat named Benji.”
When the Longhorns trot back out to the baseball diamond keep an eye out for Ryleigh White. You will see plenty of her for the next four years.
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