Seven signees from Chicagoland area
Former Flame scouts Chicago region for Marlins' staff
Over 75 military, police and fire personnel visited Les Miller Field
Granderson finished fourth in the A.L MVP voting race last season
The UIC baseball program has evolved into a perennial league champion and regional contender over the course of the last decade, and Sean McDermott has played an immense role in the Flames' maturation process every step of the way. Entering his 15th season as an assistant coach at UIC, McDermott works primarily with UIC's offense and defense, and the Flames have thrived in both departments during his tenure.
In 2012, the Flames boasted four players that hit over .300 in Alex Grunenwald (.345), Joe Betcher (.311), Jon Ryan (.302) and Alex Lee (.300) all of whom are returning in 2013. UIC's hitting turned red hot during the final stretch of the 2012 season as the Flames made a Horizon League title game run. In the tournament, UIC tallied a .357 team batting average with eight homers, five triples and 11 doubles.
Execution in key situations helped the 2008 NCAA Regional team, which ranked in the Top 20 nationally in both sacrifice flies (34) and sacrifice bunts (60). In 2007 the Flames exploded on the offensive end when it counted most, outscoring their opposition in the Horizon League Championship by a 35-10 margin with a team batting average of .417 and 23 extra-base hits in three games to sweep their way to a league title and NCAA Regional bid. In 2006 the Flames led the Horizon League in team batting average, home runs, stolen bases and on-base percentage while setting school records in runs per game and hits per game. Eight UIC players hit .300 or better that season to spur a final team batting average of .325. The Flames also hit 115 doubles and 53 home runs while averaging of seven runs of offense per game.
A year earlier the Flames set a school record for runs scored in a single season (429) while batting .307 with 120 doubles to key UIC's road to an NCAA Regional berth. McDermott has also played a major role in the development of UIC's infielders and catching corps, shoring up the defensive side of the Flames' game while coaching the same players to success at the plate. McDermott served as the chief recruiter for the Flames during his first nine seasons and was instrumental in bringing the top-notch recruits that have played a big part in resuscitating a program that has gone on to produce well over 300 wins, nine Horizon League regular season titles, four Horizon League tournament crowns and four berths to the NCAA Regionals.
McDermott joined the Flames in 1998 after serving three years as head baseball coach at Viterbo College in LaCrosse, Wis. During his stint with the V-Hawks, the squad set a single-season record for wins with 32 victories in 1997, and then made their first-ever appearance in the NAIA Regional Tournament in 1998. At Viterbo McDermott's teams set several school records, including runs scored, home runs, walks, hits, RBI, and doubles. In 1997 he led Viterbo to 32 victories, which is the best single-season win total in the program's history. Prior to his position at Viterbo College, McDermott served as an assistant coach/recruiting coordinator at Princeton University for two seasons.
Additionally, he was the head baseball coach at J. Frank White Academy and a graduate assistant coach at Lincoln Memorial University, both located in Harrogate, Tenn. McDermott began his collegiate playing career as a second baseman at Indian Hills Community College in Centerville, Iowa before transferring to Lincoln Memorial University, where he played shortstop for two seasons. McDermott, a 1993 graduate of Lincoln Memorial, and his wife, Lois, have three sons: Jack, Joe and Thomas.
E-Mail Coach McDermott at email@example.com.