Tennessee State University

Tennessee State University Athletics
3500 John A. Merritt Boulevard Nashville, TN 37209
Division 1 Tennessee Southeast
Public Medium National competitor


Email coach

Genee McRath

Genee McRath joined the Tiger softball coaching staff in the fall of 2019. McRath comes to Tennessee State after spending over 13 years as a coach and private instructor.

McRath has specialized in hitting, throwing, fielding, catching and base-running instruction during her time as a clinician. She has also worked with prospective players on all aspects of the game. Preparing athletes both physically and mentally to be strong.

McRath began her coaching career as a volunteer assistant at Lemoyne-Owen College in 2008. The following year she served as the head coach at Kirby High School in Memphis, Tenn.

After moving to middle Tennessee, McRath became the head coach at St. Cecilia High School from 2010-11. She followed with stops at Battle Ground Academy and Ensworth Academy as an assistant.

McRath graduated from the University of Mississippi with a Bachelor of Applied Science in Criminal Justice and English. The Memphis native was a member of the Rebels softball team and served as a member of the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) where she represented 450 student-athletes, organized community service projects and career development for student-athletes.

McRath resides in Franklin, Tenn. with her husband Gerald and her two children, Cademorgan and Blake.

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Email coach

Lexie Higgins

Lexie Higgins joined the TSU coaching staff in the fall of 2022. Higgins comes to Nashville after spending the 2022 season as a volunteer assistant coach at UAB. She got her coaching career started at her alma mater, Samford. Higgins was the volunteer assistant during the 2019 season, followed by two years as an assistant coach in 2020 and 2021.

Higgins excelled defensively during her four-year playing career at Samford. After limited playing time as a freshman in 2015, she became a staple of Burford-Johnson’s lineups for the next three seasons, starting 174 of a possible 178 contests.

In 2016, Higgins was the only Bulldog to start all 60 games, helping to lead Samford to SoCon regular season and tournament titles, as well as an NCAA Regional berth. With nine home runs and 37 runs batted in, she earned a second-team All-SoCon selection.

As a senior in 2018, Higgins led the team in home runs (9) and slugging percentage (.496). She also ranked second in OPS (.850), runs batted in (27), and total bases (69).

Higgins graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Sports Administration.

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Email coach

Renae Spears

Renae Spears is entering her second season on the coaching staff after spending last season as a graduate assistant coach, following a playing career at East Tennessee State University and TSU. Spears spent her first four seasons at ETSU and used the COVID-eligibility to transfer to TSU for her final year. At TSU, she started in 39 of 40 games, averaged .231 in 108 at-bats, tied for the team-lead in triples, and ranked third in runs, hits and walks.

Spears was born and raised in Memphis, Tenn., graduated magna cum laude from ETSU with a bachelors degree in Physical Education, while she's currently pursuing a Master's degree in Human Performance and Sport Sciences with a concentration in Sports Administration. The younger sister of head coach, Genee McRath.

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