Florida State’s legendary head coach Mike Martin continues to pile up victories in his final season, becoming the first ever college baseball head coach to break the 2,000-win mark. Let’s take a look at some of the names he’s passed on his climb to the top.
You may be surprised at some of the names. You won’t find Southern California’s Rod Dedeaux or LSU’s Skip Bertman and their combined 16 national championships on the list. Nor will you find familiar names like Jerry Kindall or Cliff Gustafson, who was recently bumped out of the top nine by LSU’s current skipper, Paul Mainieri.
Here are the nine coaches with the most wins in college baseball history, and counting.
(* — Active coaches. All wins as of April 17, 2019)
2,009 — *Mike Martin, Florida State
What’s more impressive? The fact that Mike Martin has reached the 2,000-win plateau, or that he’s done it all at the same school. Martin is Florida State baseball and is as much a college baseball staple as any head coach before him. His quest for his first national championship continues in his 40th and final season.
1,975 — Augie Garrido, San Francisco State, Cal Poly, Cal State Fullerton, Illinois, Texas
The well-traveled Garrido left his mark all across college baseball, but it was with the Titans and Longhorns that he became an icon. Garrido is the only head coach to have multiple championships with two schools (three with Cal State Fullerton and two with Texas) and became one of the most beloved figures in Omaha lore.
1,768 — Gene Stephenson, Wichita State
Seven trips to Rosenblatt Stadium, three NCAA coach of the year awards, and the 1989 national championship. Stephenson made the Shockers a Missouri Valley Conference powerhouse in a sport dominated by conferences out on the West and East Coast and the state of Texas. Three of Stephenson’s College World Series teams hold the top marks for wins entering Omaha, with his 1982 team posting an unthinkable 70 victories.
1,627 — Mark Marquess, Stanford
Marquess is one of a small few that played and coached in the College World Series, playing for The Cardinal in the 1967 CWS before becoming skipper for the next forty years in 1977. Marquess made Stanford a West Coast power with a pair of back-to-back national championships (1987-88) as well as back-to-back national runners-up seasons ((2000-01).
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1,594 — Jim Morris, Georgia Tech, Miami (FL)
Morris laid the foundation for years of success at Georgia Tech before heading to South Beach and redefining national power with the Hurricanes. Morris took over in Miami in 1994 and led his teams to the College World Series in each of his first six seasons at the helm. You’re going to pile up wins pretty easily with consistency like that.
1,508 — Larry Hays, Lubbock Christian, Texas Tech
Hays is actually still active. He’s currently the head coach for the Colorado Christian softball team in Division II, where he coaches against both of his sons in the same region. When Hays arrived at Texas Tech, the program had a combined record under .500. Hays changed all that, putting the Red Raiders on the map and making them a power in Texas baseball.
1,456 — *Mike Fox, N.C. Wesleyan, North Carolina
Fox is another coach that played in the College World Series before taking over at his alma mater over 20 years later. The Tar Heels have become a threat atop the ACC for the better part of the last two decades with Fox as head coach. With the end not seemingly in sight, expect Fox to quickly continue his climb up the list.
1,444 — Chuck Hartman, High Point, Virginia Tech
Beginning in 1969 at High Point and carrying over to his time with the Hokies, Hartman strung together a run of 35 winning seasons in 36 tries. That’s the kind of remarkable consistency that will keep your name in the top 10. Hartman did the bulk of his damage with Virginia Tech, finishing his 28-year Hokies career with 961 wins.
1,439 — *Paul Mainieri, St. Thomas (FL), Air Force, Notre Dame, LSU
Mainieri has been a winner his whole career and has continued the winning tradition with the Tigers. Now in his 13th season in Baton Rouge, Mainieri has piled up seven regional championships, five Super Regional titles, four SEC tournament titles, and the 2009 national championship while never having a losing season to date with LSU.
(Coaching wins taken from the official NCAA college baseball record book.)