Courtesy of Kent State Sports Information
KENT, Ohio – Kent State University has assured its baseball program will be in good hands for the future. Director of Athletics Joel Nielsen has announced that the university has signed Head Coach Scott Stricklin to a six-year contract extension.
"Our new agreement with Scott is just part of the University's overall commitment to ensure that our baseball program remains one of the top programs in the nation," said Nielsen. "Before we even returned from the College World Series, President Lefton and I made it a priority to make certain we did everything possible to keep our baseball program at a nationally-competitive level."
"I want to thank President Lefton, Senior Vice President (Gregg) Floyd, Mr. Nielsen and the entire University Administration for their commitment to our program," said Stricklin, a 1995 Kent State alum who has led the Golden Flashes to five NCAA Regional appearances in his eight years at the helm.
"I am very proud to be the head coach at my alma-mater and thrilled at the support the University has shown not only to me, but our entire coaching staff. We are looking forward to working on getting back to Omaha and a long run of continued success."
In addition to the six-year, $300,000 a year extension for the 40-yr old Stricklin, the University has announced the installation of lights at Olga A. Mural Field at Schoonover Stadium for the spring of 2013. The lights are first in a series of facility improvements and upgrades for the home of the Golden Flashes. Along with the University support for baseball, the Department of Athletics has raised nearly $1,000,000 since June from the private donors which will go toward other facility projects funded by the Baseball Enhancement Fund.
"The exposure brought to the University this past year during the College World Series generated over $3.5 million in publicity and reached an estimated 1.35 billion people," said Nielsen. "The opportunity to bring our University that level of national coverage is no small task. Scott has given us a national-caliber team on the field and in the classroom, and our goal is to provide the needed resources to get back to Omaha year after year."
This past spring, the Kent State baseball team backed its fifth place national finish and College World Series run by earning a Public Recognition Award from the NCAA, based on their most recent multi-year Academic Progress Rate. The award is given each year to teams with APRs in the top 10 percent in each sport.
With perfect 1000 multi-year APR, the 2012 honor marks the third consecutive year that Kent State baseball has been recognized, putting the team in elite company as one of only 16 schools in the country to reach the accomplishment. Of the 16 teams to earn the public recognition the past three years, the Golden Flashes program is the only public institution on the list that includes Brown, Bucknell, Holy Cross, Columbia, Dartmouth, Duke, Georgetown, Harvard, Lafayette, Mount St. Mary's, St. Joseph's, Stanford, Penn, Vanderbilt and Yale.
The Golden Flashes academic prowess is backed by a cumulative 3.093 team Grade Point Average. The team was recognized during the College World Series for having the highest team GPA amongst the eight teams in the bracket.