Courtesy of Dominican University, Sports Information Department
RIVER FOREST, Ill. -- Dominican University Athletics announced on Monday that it has hired Steve Hardman for the position of head baseball coach and athletics equipment manager. With over nine years experience coaching at the collegiate level, Hardman becomes the sixth head coach in the Stars' baseball program history.
Hardman spent the last five seasons with the North Park University Vikings, serving as the associate head baseball coach. During his time with the Vikings, Hardman helped head coach Luke Johnson rebuild the North Park baseball program, climbing from 14 wins in Hardman's first season to 30 wins and a share of the 2011 College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin (CCIW) regular season championship. With the Vikings, Hardman has worked with 26 All-CCIW athletes including 13 All-Region selections and a conference pitcher of the year.
In addition to the athletic success the Vikings experienced since Hardman's arrival, the program grew the roster from 28 in 2007 to 40 in 2011 with Hardman serving as the department's athletic admission recruiter. While growing the roster, the baseball team grade point average climbed from 2.3 to 3.1
"After a national search," commented Erick Baumann, the director of athletics at Dominican University, "we are excited about the addition of Steve to our baseball program and full-time staff. His resume stood out amongst a very strong applicant pool and we are confident that his experience has prepared him to be the Stars' head baseball coach."
Prior to his stint at North Park, Hardman cut his teeth at North Central College, where he spent four seasons with the Cardinals' baseball program as an assistant coach. Additionally, Hardman spent three summers as the head coach of the Glen Ellyn Jam of the Chicago-Metro Collegiate Summer League. In 2006, the Jam finished as the runner-up in the AAABC tournament in Johnstown, Penn., under Hardman.
As a collegiate player, Hardman played at nearly every level, beginning his career at Division III Loras College where he went 8-1 as a starting pitcher for the Duhawks and was named the Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (IIAC) Newcomer of the Year. Hardman then transferred to Illinois Valley Community Conference where he garnered Rawlings/ABCA All-America honors in 1999. Hardman then finished his collegiate career at Division I Northern Illinois University where he was a two-year letterwinner for the Huskies. After college, Hardman pitched professionally for three seasons with three teams in the Frontier League, the Cook County Cheetahs, the Rockford River Hawks and the Kenosha Mammoths.
"I am honored and humbled for the opportunity to become the next head baseball coach at Dominican University," said Hardman. "Words cannot express how much this means to me and my family. I have a lot of work ahead of me with the new position, but I look forward to hitting the road running and laying the foundation for excellence in the classroom, on campus and on the field for our program."