RICHMOND, Va. – In the midst of his 18th season at the helm of the VCU baseball program, Head Coach Paul Keyes will be taking a leave of absence from his position to focus on health issues.

He will be temporarily be relieving himself of his day-to-day duties as head coach. During Keyes' absence, Associate Head Coach Shawn Stiffler will take over the day-to-day duties and lead the Black & Gold in its quest for a CAA Tournament berth in late May.

"The main concern right now is for Coach Keyes to remain healthy and our entire athletic department will do whatever it takes to support him during this time," Director of Athletics Norwood Teague said.

Keyes, a Newport News, Va. native, has piled up 587 wins during his 18 seasons with eight NCAA Tournament appearances and five CAA Championships in the past 10 years.

Under his tutelage, VCU has posted winning seasons in 13 of the past 15 years.

The Rams will return to action this weekend with a three-game series at the University of Delaware.