JUGS Sports | Mike Fox

Head Baseball Coach, University of North Carolina

Coach Mike Fox

Mike Fox
Article and Drill Archive

Biography

Now in his 17th season as head coach at the University of North Carolina, Mike Fox has guided his alma mater to the most successful period in school history and firmly established the Tar Heels as one of the nation's preeminent college baseball programs. Capped by six trips to the College World Series in the last nine years, Carolina has made 15 appearances in the NCAA Tournament and posted a 729-301-1 record in Fox's 16 seasons in Chapel Hill.

Fox, who ranks third among the game's active leaders in career winning percentage, has been recognized by several outlets as one of the nation's top coaches in recent years. Baseball America honored Fox as its national coach of the year in 2008, and Fox's peers - the American Baseball Coaches Association - selected him as the Atlantic Region Coach of the Year in three of the last four seasons.

Fox's leadership and vision were instrumental in the construction of the $25.6-million Boshamer Stadium, which opened in 2009 to rave reviews as one of the finest collegiate baseball facilities in the nation. The stadium underwent another updgrade this offseason with the installation of a state of the art video board.

One of only six men to play in and then coach his alma mater to the College World Series, Fox has led Carolina to 13 consecutive trips to postseason play for the first time in school history.

Fox has coached his teams to NCAA tourney play in 29 of his 31 seasons as a head coach, including a combined 14 trips to the NCAA Division I and Division III World Series. Fox, who has led Carolina to 15 College World Series victories over the last nine seasons, has either played or coached in all 17 CWS wins by the Tar Heels.

But just as important as the on-field success Fox has found at UNC is the type of program that he has built. On Feb. 28, 2007, while the Tar Heels were ranked No. 1 by Baseball America, they also claimed the top spot when USA Today re-ranked its preseason top 25 based on the NCAA's Academic Progress Rate (APR). Fox's players are regulars on the Atlantic Coast Conference's Academic Honor Roll, including 43 honorees over the last eight seasons, and he has coached six ESPN The Magazine Academic all-district selections in the last nine years, including Adam Warren, who was an Academic All-America pick in 2009, and Benton Moss in 2013 and 2014.

Fox became the 24th head coach in Carolina history on May 7, 1998, when former Athletic Director Dick Baddour selected the former UNC player and North Carolina Wesleyan College head coach to lead the Tar Heels into the 21st century. Fox is just the third head coach in Chapel Hill since 1947.

Fox has set a high standard of success in his first 16 years on the job, averaging more than 45 wins per season and guiding the Tar Heels to 50 or more victories in five of the last nine seasons, including a school-record 59 in 2013. Fox collected his 700th career college coaching victory in 2002, his 800th career win in 2005 and his 900th win in 2007. He reached the 1,000-win mark with a 10-3 victory over Gardner-Webb March 4, 2009 and notched his 1,100th win in 2011. Win No. 1,200 came in a 10-0 win over UNCW on April 3, 2013.

Overall, 72 Tar Heels to play for Fox over the past 16 years have been drafted by Major League Baseball organizations, including 11 first-round or supplemental selections: Colin Moran in 2013, Levi Michael in 2011, Matt Harvey in 2010, Dustin Ackley and Alex White in 2009, Andrew Miller and Daniel Bard in 2006, Russ Adams in 2002, Tyrell Godwin in 2000 and Mike Bynum and Kyle Snyder in 1999.

Twenty-nine of Fox's former Tar Heels were on professional rosters in 2014. Mike Mrorin became the latest Fox product to debut in MLB this past summer as he made his first appearance for the Los Angeles Angels on April 30. In the past four years, Carolina has had 10 former players debut in the big leagues, more than any school in the country.