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Jeff Mercer

 
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Jeff Mercer enters his second year as head coach of the Indiana baseball program in 2020.

In his first season as head coach, Mercer led the Hoosiers to the 2019 Big Ten Regular Season title, earning Big Ten Coach of the Year honors. The conference title was the seventh in program history for IU and the first since 2014.

Mercer became the first Big Ten head coach since 1982 (John Anderson, Minnesota) to win a regular season conference title in his first season as the skipper. He was just the second coach in IU history – in any sport, men's or women's – to win an outright Big Ten championship in his (or her) first year. Everett Dean (1924-25) did it in baseball in his first year as both baseball and basketball coach.

Indiana earned a No. 2 seed in the NCAA Tournament, finishing the season with an overall record of 37-23 and a Big Ten mark of 17-7. A school-record 10 Hoosiers were selected in the 2019 MLB Draft, led by outfield Matt Gorski, who was selected in the second round (57th overall). Gorski was the highest-drafted Hoosier since Kyle Schwarber in 2014 (1st round, fourth overall).

Pitcher Andrew Saalfrank was named the Big Ten Pitcher of the Year and earned a spot on the All-Big Ten First Team along with utility player Matt Lloyd. Scotty Bradley, Cole Barr and Matt Gorski each made the second team, while Elijah Dunham earned third team laurels. Grant Richardson picked up All-Big Ten Freshman Team honors, while Drew Ashley was named the Sportsmanship Award winner.

Mercer, a native of Bargersville, Indiana, is widely regarded as one of the top young baseball coaches in the country. Known for his strength as a recruiter and talent developer as well as his innovative use of advanced analytics, Mercer was named the 2018 Horizon League Coach of the Year with the Wright State Raiders. Mercer has recruited exceptionally within the state of Indiana and Midwest, developed twelve players he recruited into Major League Baseball draft picks since 2015, and led Wright State to 77 wins, including six wins against ranked opponents in just two seasons as head coach.

“Predictably, we had very strong interest in this position,” said Indiana University Vice President and Director of Athletics Fred Glass. “Jeff Mercer quickly rose to the top of an impressive field. I have no doubt that he is the right person to build on the success of Indiana baseball, including taking us back to Omaha.”