2014 Coach Biography: Mike Curran, Head Coach - Ohlone College Renegades Men's Baseball

Mike Curran was hired to be the next coach at Ohlone College in June of 2013, after spending the past two years as the head coach at West Hills College in Coalinga, CA. Prior to West Hills, Curran spent the 2011 season at Fresno State University, where he was an assistant to 2008 National Champion and 2-time NCAA Coach of the Year Mike Batesole. Curran possesses two Masters Degrees and also teaches full-time Kinesiology and Physical Education classes at Ohlone College.

West Hills College (Coalinga, CA; 2012 – ‘13)

After inheriting a team that returned just six players and went just 7-28 before his arrival, Curran incorporated a new style of hard-work and no-nonsense play which took the Falcon program to new heights. After an impressive 14-22 season in 2012 where six Falcons received All-CVC honors, the 2013 Falcons got off to their best start in conference history after taking 2 of 3 from Porterville, 2 of 3 from Reedley, and sweeping a 3-game series from perennial Top 20 program College of the Sequoias. The season ended at 15-21 with eight Falcons taking home All-CVC honors. Academically, the Falcons thrived in the classroom as well, as the team GPA rose from 1.87 in 2011 to a 2.98 in 2012 to 3.05 in the Fall of 2012, where an amazing 19 of 29 Falcons recorded at least a 3.0 GPA. The Falcons placed six members on the CCCBCA All-State All-Academic Team during these two season, which was the most in the state. The Falcon baseball team also underwent an aggressive fundraising campaign and raised enough money to purchase over $25,000 of new uniforms, equipment, and field maintenance tools. Improvements included new backstop padding, windscreens for the entire field, new field screens, a newly renovated infield surface, a new batting cage, and new turf for the batting cages.

Fresno State (Fresno, CA; 2011)

As an assistant, Curran had his hand in a 40-16 season where the Bulldogs captured a share of the WAC Championship (with Hawaii), the WAC Tournament Championship, reached as high as #8 in the national rankings, and made a trip to the NCAA Division I Regionals where they were eventually ousted by tournament host UCLA. While with the Bulldogs, Curran coached first base and assisted in all facets of the program. A total of 10 Bulldogs were taken in June 2011 MLB draft.

Toronto Blue Jays (Fresno, CA; 2010)

As an associate scout, Coach Curran worked for Toronto's area scout Blake Crosby (brother of Arizona Diamondback Bobby Crosby). His job was to evaluate and recommend players from the Central Valley. Nick Vander Tuig, who started on the mound for NCAA Champion UCLA in the College World Series, played for the Coach Curran's Central California Blaze team in 2010 and was also drafted by Toronto in the same summer. Former Blaze player Art Charles, Jr. was also drafted by Toronto, in June of 2009.

Washington Union High School (Fresno, CA; 2005 – ‘10)

Washington Union High School developed into one of the premier teams in the state in the six years that Curran was at the helm. Traditionally known as a "basketball school" (the school had several players move on to the NBA), the Panthers quickly turned into a "baseball school," posting four straight years of big numbers: 26-6 in 2007, 28-3 in 2008, 32-3 in 2009, and 23-13 in 2010. During this time, Curran's Panther's captured back-to-back CIF-CS Valley Championships (‘09, ‘10) and the CalHi Sports State Championship (‘09) as well. In addition to the back-to-back CIF-CS Valley titles and the State Championship, the Panthers set the 118-year-old school's record for victories in a season three separate times (the 32 wins in ‘09 was also the highest win total of any team in the state of California that year).

Central California Blaze Baseball Club (Clovis, CA; 2005 – ‘12)

While coaching at Washington Union, Curran put together the Central California Blaze Baseball Club, a 19-under travel team that became known as one of the top travel teams on the entire West Coast. In just eight seasons, 157 players moved on to professional and collegiate baseball. The Blaze captured 30 tournament championships, advanced to the playoff round of the highly-recruited Fall Desert Classic four straight times (Las Vegas, NV; 2007-2010), and traveled to tournaments in Arizona, Nevada, Hawaii, and all over California. As of 2013, a total of 13 Blaze players have gone in the MLB Draft, including Aaron Blair (1st Round, 2013), Carlos Salazar (3rd Round, 2013), Vander Tuig (6th Round, 2013), and Jameson Smith (3rd Round, 2007). Former Blaze player Jacob Gatewood is expected by some to be the first pick of the entire draft in the summer of 2014.

In the 2007 season, the team put together a record of 51-8 and won six straight tournament titles, highlighted by winning back-to-back-to-back games (21 innings over a span of 10 hours) on the final day of the 5th annual Wood Bat Championships in Sacramento, to capture the crown. In 2008, eight players from the 49-11 team (five championships) moved on to NCAA Division I baseball. The 2009 and '10, the teams both put up 60-win seasons and captured a combined ten championships. In 2011, the Blaze again pulled off three straight wins in a single day to capture the USSSA / TPR Summer Championships title. Eight Blaze players from the 2011 - 2012 teams are currently on the 2014 Fresno State roster (Jacob Alvarez, Jordan Brink, Taylor Tempel, Jordan Luplow, Chris Mariscal, Blake Quinn, Kody Batesole, and Jeff Brown) while players from Clemson, Arizona, Pepperdine, USD, USF, Marshall, and several other top schools have played for the Blaze club.

Major League Baseball International (Poland; 2006)

In the summer of 2006, Coach Curran worked for Major League Baseball (MLB) as an Envoy coach—he traveled to Poland for five weeks to work with the Polish National Team and various club teams throughout the country.

St. John's College High School (Washington, DC; 2004)

As an assistant coach for St. John’s College High School in Washington, DC, the team went 22-5, played for the DC City Championship, and once held Baseball America’s #24 national ranking. Three players signed Division I scholarships for the program that has enjoyed success at the national level in recent years.

California Lutheran University (Thousand Oaks, CA; 1996 – ‘99)

After his playing career, he was immediately hired at California Lutheran University (CLU) as the team’s hitting instructor and recruiting coordinator. Coach Curran’s recruiting classes from 1996-99 included five NCAA All-Americans, 29 All-SCIAC selections, two SCIAC Player of the Year awardees, and seven players who signed professional contracts. The team went to the NCAA College World Series three times in his four years as the recruiting coordinator and hitting instructor (’96, ’98, ’99).

Coach Curran graduated from CLU in 1996. While earning his undergraduate degree there, he played four years for the Kingsmen baseball program. The dominating performances put up by the Kingsmen in those four years began a great baseball tradition at the school that still lives today. From 1992-95, Coach Curran played on teams that went a combined 129-39 while winning three conference championships. Additionally, the Kingsmen made four straight trips to the NCAA Playoffs, held the nation’s #1 ranking in ’92 and ’93 and went the NCAA College World Series both years. The 1992 team finished with a record of 43-6 and came within two outs of winning the national championship. Although a Division III school, the Kingsmen knocked off Division I foes San Diego State, Cal-State Northridge, and Cal Poly-SLO during the run.

Although coaching is his passion, Coach Curran also has a love for academia. He received his Masters Degree in Education from California Lutheran University in 1999. Additionally, he returned back to the West Coast from Washington, DC in June of 2004 after a four-year stint at The Catholic University of America and Washington Theological Union. It was the latter that he earned a Masters Degree in Theological Studies.

Improving the lives of young men and women also ranks high on his list. He has been a teacher for 13 years, with stints at Moorpark High School (Moorpark, CA), St. John’s College High School (Washington, DC), Washington Union High School (Fresno, CA), West Hills College (Coalinga, CA), and now Ohlone College.

Coach Curran is married and currently resides in Mountain House with his wife, Stephanie. The couple has three sons, Michael (8), and Matthew (6), and Maximillian (2).

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