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Not only is it the right thing to do, but it’s the smart thing to do as well.
A source has confirmed to DucksWire that Oregon Ducks baseball coach Mark Wasikowski’s contract has been extended, but the length and terms of the new contract were not disclosed.
When Wasikowski was hired at the end of the 2019 season, the Ducks were barely mediocre, and in just two seasons, Oregon hosted an NCAA Regional and was oh so close to moving on to a Super Regional. It would have been the Ducks’ first Super Regional since 2013.
In 2019, Oregon fell to 27-29 overall and 10-19 in conference play. It was the Ducks’ fourth straight year without going to the post-season and the program wasn’t trending in the right direction. That was when Oregon decided not to renew George Horton’s contract and go in a different direction.
It didn’t take the Ducks long to find their guy as Wasikowski was hired three weeks after the 2019 season ended.
After just three seasons at the helm of Purdue’s baseball program, the former Oregon assistant turned the Boilermakers completely around and he did the exact same thing with the Ducks.
Wasikowski led Purdue to a 39-win season in 2018, leading the Boilermakers to just the third NCAA Regional appearance in school history and only the second since 1982. The Boilermakers finished second in the Big Ten regular-season while finishing as the conference tournament runner-up.
During his first season at Purdue, Wasikowski led the Boilermakers to 29 wins, a 19-win improvement from the 10-44 campaign the team had the year before his arrival.
At Oregon, Wasikowski’s team improved right away and it looked like they were going to have a nice season, but the 2020 pandemic hit, and the Ducks finished the year after only 15 games played. That improvement showed itself in a big way in 2021 as Oregon was just one game from winning its first conference title since the program’s resurrection in 2009.
The Ducks finished the regular season 39-16 and 20-10 in Pac-12 action. They featured the conference Player of the Year in Aaron Zavala and his fellow All-Americans Robert Ahlstrom and Gabe Matthews.
Wasikowski missed out on being named the Pac-12 Coach of the Year as that award went to Arizona’s Jay Johnson, who later left the Wildcats to go coach at LSU.
Along with his immediate success, Oregon didn’t want to see Wasikowski do something similar as Johnson, so the Ducks thought it would be prudent to extend his contract for another five seasons.