Known as one of the top on-the-field coaches in collegiate baseball, head coach Randy Mazey enters his fifth season at the helm of the Mountaineers after leading WVU to record-setting success in 2016 and guiding the team to unprecedented heights in his first four years in Morgantown.
With one of the youngest starting lineups in the country, Mazey led WVU to a record-breaking year in 2016, highlighted by the team’s first trip to the Big 12 Championship Game. The Mountaineers went 36-22 in Mazey’s fourth season, coming just short of an NCAA Tournament berth.
West Virginia’s 36 wins were its most in a single season in Mazey’s tenure and the most since a 37-win campaign in 2009. A 12-11 mark in Big 12 play earned the Mountaineers the No. 4 seed in the Big 12 Championship, its second-highest seed since joining the league. WVU went 3-1 in the tournament and made its first conference title game appearance since 1996 and 11th in team history.
The Mountaineers finished the year as one of the hottest teams in the country, winning 17 of their last 21 games. The stretch included a 10-game winning streak, the longest in the country at the time and WVU’s longest since an 11-game streak in 2008.
Mazey won his 100th game at WVU in an 11-6 victory at Kansas on March 26. He became the fifth coach in program history to eclipse the 100-win mark and the second to accomplish the feat in his first four seasons. Additionally, Mazey’s 300th career win came in an 11-2 win over Texas on May 6.
With success on the field came plenty of recognition off of it. For the second consecutive year, two Mountaineers earned Freshman All-America honors. Right fielder Darius Hill was named to five Freshman All-America teams, while Ivan Rodriguez was recognized once.
Additionally, WVU collected a program-record 10 All-Big 12 honors, headlined by junior Chad Donato, who became the fourth Mountaineer to earn All-Big 12 First Team accolades. Four Mountaineers were named to the All-Tournament Team, the most in program history: senior KC Huth, sophomore Kyle Davis, sophomore Conner Dotson and senior Ross Vance.
Throughout the year, West Virginia earned a total of 10 Big 12 weekly honors, the most in a season since WVU joined the Big 12 in 2013 and tied for the most of any school in the conference in 2016. The total included the first sweep by any Big 12 school of the Player, Pitcher and Newcomer of the Week awards on May 2.
Fans once again came out in record numbers to see the Mountaineers, as a total of 40,390 fans filled Monongalia County Ballpark in 2016, the highest home attendance in team history. For 30 home games, WVU averaged 1,346 fans per game, the second-highest average in program history.
The Mountaineers continued to excel in the classroom, as seven were named to the Academic All-Big 12 team, with five First Team honorees.
Mazey’s success of producing professional talent continued as Chad Donato and Blake Smith were selected in the 2016 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft by the Houston Astros and Los Angeles Angels, respectively. Ross Vance and Ray Guerrini also signed free-agent contracts with the St. Louis Cardinals and Seattle Mariners and KC Huth signed with the American Association’s Joplin Blasters.
With a young squad, the program’s upward progression continued in Mazey’s third season, as the Mountaineers earned a berth in the Big 12 Championship for the third consecutive season.
In the inaugural season of Monongalia County Ballpark, West Virginia finished 27-27 overall, highlighted by series wins at Clemson, at Kansas State, at Oklahoma State and vs. Texas Tech.
Despite moving into its new ballpark halfway through the season, WVU broke attendance records for the third consecutive season under Mazey. A total of 33,158 fans, an average of over 1,500 per game, cheered on the Mountaineers at home, a program record.
Following an impressive season, several Mountaineers earned national recognition. Freshmen Kyle Davis and BJ Myers had breakout campaigns and earned Freshmen All-America accolades. Davis was named to a program record five Freshman All-America teams, and Myers was named a Freshman All-American by Louisville Slugger.
Two Mountaineers were selected in the MLB Draft. Junior Blake Smith was picked in the 24th round by Washington, and senior Taylor Munden was picked by Miami in the 27th round.
Mazey continued to lead the Mountaineers in the right direction, qualifying for the Big 12 Championship for the second-straight season and narrowly missing a chance to appear in an NCAA Regional for the first time since 1996.
West Virginia finished 28-26 overall, including impressive series wins over Baylor, Oklahoma, Kansas State and Texas.
Offensively, the Mountaineers ranked No. 1 in hitting (.287) amongst Big 12 teams. Individually, Bobby Boyd (.356), Billy Fleming (.351) and Ryan McBroom (.341) were ranked No. 1-3 in the Big 12 in batting average.
The pitching staff posted its lowest earned-run average (3.73) since 1974, marking the first back-to-back under 4.00 ERA seasons since 1973-74.
For the second-straight season, the Mountaineers averaged over 1,000 fans (1,098) with seven of the 15 home games featuring crowds of 1,000 or more.
Following the season, six players were chosen in the MLB Draft, led by eighth-rounders Boyd and Harrison Musgrave
After being picked to finish last in the Big 12 preseason poll, Mazey’s first season at the helm of the Mountaineers was a magical one. The team finished with a record of 33-26, including a 13-11 mark in Big 12 play, to finish third in the final conference standings and qualify for the Big 12 Championship.
It was only WVU’s fifth 30-win season since 1999 and featured Big 12 series victories against Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas and Texas Tech.
The fans throughout the state of West Virginia began to follow the Mountaineers, and for the first time ever, WVU ranked in the national average home figures at No. 50 (1,328). Twelve of the 21 home games featured crowds of 1,000 or more, including a Hawley Field record of 2,535 fans on April 30 against Pitt.
Offensively, the Mountaineers continued their annual prowess, batting .275 as a team and smacking 32 home runs. McBroom hit a Big 12-leading 12 home runs, and left fielder Jacob Rice earned the WVU batting title with a .333 average.
The pitching staff posted its lowest earned-run average (3.88) since 1978, lowest opponent batting average (.256) since 1993 and the least earned runs allowed (226) since 2001. Musgrave became the first WVU pitcher to earn All-America honors since 1997, completing the year with a 9-1 record, posting a 2.17 ERA and tossing three complete games. In 95.1 innings of work, Musgrave struck out 81 batters and allowed just 65 hits. Musgrave also earned Big 12 Pitcher of the Year honors after earning Big 12 Pitcher of the Week four times and National Pitcher of the Week three times.
Previously obsolete, the run game changed drastically to help WVU offensively and defensively. Mountaineer runners finished with 68 stolen bases, the most since 1998, while opponents only were successful 31 times. The pitchers also controlled the run game, picking off a school-record and NCAA-best 27 runners.
Following the season, McBroom, Musgrave, right-hander pitcher Sean Carley and third baseman Ryan Tuntland were selected in the Major League Baseball Draft. It was only the fifth time in school history that four or more players were drafted.
A total of nine players earned All-Big 12 honors, while three players were named to the All-Big 12 Academic Team.
Mazey has had a wealth of success developing professional-caliber players, a tradition that has continued in record numbers at West Virginia. Ninety-five times in his career one of Mazey’s players have received the call on draft day from a Major League club.
That number includes 14 MLB draft selections in Mazey’s four seasons, the most draft picks in a four-year stretch in team history. At least two West Virginia players have been drafted in each of Mazey’s four years. With Donato and Smith’s draft selections in 2016, there have been 84 Mountaineer draft selections since the first draft was held in 1965.
Numerous players have had plenty of Major League success after playing for Mazey. The list includes Cy Young Award winner Jake Arrieta and current St. Louis Cardinals infielder Matt Carpenter.
Prior to West Virginia
Previously the head coach at East Carolina (2004-06) and Charleston Southern (1994-96), Mazey spent six seasons as an assistant at TCU (2007-12), including the final three seasons as associate head coach. With Mazey on staff, the Horned Frogs compiled a record of 269-106 and won at least 40 games each season.
The Horned Frogs made six NCAA Regional appearances, played in three NCAA Super Regionals and made one trip to the College World Series during Mazey’s time at TCU, as well as winning six regular season and three Mountain West Conference tournament titles. Additionally, 18 pitchers were drafted in Mazey’s six seasons and five pitchers earned All-America honors.
After winning a share of the 2012 Mountain West Conference regular-season title, the Horned Frogs earned a No. 2 seed in the NCAA College Station Regional. TCU advanced to its fourth regional championship game in program history with a 5-2 win over Ole Miss; the Frogs previously advanced in 2007, 2009 and 2010. The decisive victory was the first time in school history TCU won a regional on the road. Additionally, it was the first time the Frogs won four games in a regional.
In 2012, Mazey guided freshman right-handed pitcher Preston Morrison to the Mountain West Freshman of the Year and Pitcher of the Year awards. He was the first-ever athlete in the conference’s history to earn both honors in one season, and he also earned a spot on the All-Mountain West First Team. Sophomore right-handed pitcher Andrew Mitchell also was named to the first team, while junior right-handed relief pitcher Kevin Allen scored a spot on the second team.
As a staff, TCU owned a 3.35 earned run average and held opponents to a .243 batting average. The Frogs earned seven shutouts, while two of Mazey’s pitchers won nine games each. In 2011, the Horned Frogs posted a 3.20 ERA, the lowest mark in program history since 1970, and finished with 477 strikeouts, the fifth-best program mark.
Mazey guided Matt Purke, who was distinguished as the 2010 consensus National Freshman Pitcher of the Year by several publications, to Baseball America’s Freshman of the Year award. That season’s staff produced two All-Americans and four pitchers earned all-conference honors.
The Horned Frogs posted a league-best 484 strikeouts in Mazey’s first season, while four pitchers earned all-conference honors. No fewer than two pitchers earned All-Mountain West honors in the subsequent two seasons.
In three seasons at ECU, Mazey put together a 120-66-1 (.644) record, including a school-record 51-13 (.797) mark in his second season in 2004. ECU earned three trips to the NCAA Regionals under his watch.
Prior to a 35-26 campaign in 2005 and a third trip to the NCAA Regionals, Mazey had arguably his most successful season as a head coach, leading the Pirates to a Conference USA regular-season championship with a 25-5 league mark and an NCAA Super Regional appearance. ECU finished the year ranked as high as No. 8 in Baseball America’s poll, and Mazey was named the C-USA Keith LeClair Coach of the Year. Additionally, he was named the East Region Coach of Year by the American Baseball Coaches Association.
Mazey earned his first head coaching opportunity at Charleston Southern, accepting the position at the age of 27 in 1994. After going 36-60 in his first two seasons, he led a CSU team, picked to finish last in the 1996 preseason coaches’ poll, to an NCAA Regional appearance, the Buccaneers first-ever bid, and a 30-24-1 mark, the team’s first winning season since 1988 and its second 30-win season in school history. Named the Big South Coach of the Year, Mazey directed CSU to the Big South Championship. Following that season, Mazey became the recruiting coordinator and pitching coach at Georgia in 1997, where his staff produced it’s lowest ERA in four years and set a strikeout record.
Mazey then spent the 1998 season at ECU as an assistant and also served as the program’s recruiting coordinator. During his first tenure with the Pirates, the team posted the third-highest strikeout total in school history.
Mazey spent four seasons as the recruiting coordinator and pitching coach at Tennessee. His staffs posted two of the top four strikeout totals in school history, and he produced six Volunteer pitchers who signed professionally, including one first-round draft pick. In 2000, Tennessee had the second-best ERA in the Southeastern Conference. The Vols advanced to the College World Series in 2001 and tied for third place.
Mazey began his coaching career as an assistant coach at Clemson, his alma mater, in 1990. During his four-year stint (1990-93), the Tigers recorded a 198-67 mark, won two Atlantic Coast Conference titles, made four straight NCAA Regional appearances and advanced to the College World Series in 1991.
A three-time All-ACC selection as an outfielder/pitcher during his playing career (1985-88) at Clemson, Mazey won two ACC titles with the Tigers and advanced to two NCAA Regionals. He finished with a career batting average of .331 and was 8-1 on the mound.
Mazey was drafted in the 28th round of the 1988 draft by Cleveland and played two seasons in that organization’s minor league system before returning to Clemson as an assistant coach.
A native of Johnstown, Pa., he earned a bachelor of science degree in administrative management from Clemson in 1988 and an MBA from Clemson in 1993. Following his prep career at United High in Johnstown, he was an 11th round pick in the amateur draft by the Baltimore Orioles.
Randy and his wife, Amanda, have a son, Weston Aydan, and a daughter, Sierra Maranda.