Baseball head coach signs contract extension through 2016

Head coach John Anderson led the effort to build a new on-campus baseball facility.

Gophers head coach John Anderson, in his 31st year, signed a contract extension that will keep him with the team through the 2016 season.

Ian Larson, Daily File Photo

Gophers head coach John Anderson, in his 31st year, signed a contract extension that will keep him with the team through the 2016 season.

Samuel Gordon

Minnesota head baseball coach John Anderson agreed to terms on a contract that will keep him with the team through the 2016 season, athletics director Joel Maturi announced Tuesday.

The deal will ensure that Anderson, currently in his 31st year at the helm of Gophers baseball, will coach the club for another four years beyond this season.

Anderson has a career record of 1,080-715-3. He’s been named Big Ten Coach of the Year six times and has helped lead the Gophers to 17 NCAA tournament appearances. His 1,080 coaching victories are the most in Big Ten history.

“There is no one more deserving of this than John,” Maturi said in a release. “Not only is he the winningest coach in the Big Ten, the manner in which he runs his program is remarkable.”

The 56-year-old Anderson was a driving force behind a successful campaign for a new on-campus baseball facility. In February, the University of Minnesota hired a construction contractor to build a new Siebert Field. Construction is scheduled to begin this summer.

Anderson said the University’s commitment to a new facility was crucial to his new contract agreement.

“I was concerned about making sure first and foremost that [an on-campus facility] was going to become a reality,” he said. “That was as much as my decision to delay a [long-term contract] as anything.”

Anderson had been working on a year-to-year basis since his last five-year deal expired in 2010. He said the new contract will probably be his last.

“After 31 years, you’ve got to pay attention to your energy level … I’ve been going back and forth about some of those things the past few years just trying to figure out what I want to do next.”

Since Maturi announced in February his impending retirement as athletics director, Anderson’s name has been thrown around as his possible successor.

However, Anderson said he hasn’t been contacted by anybody about the athletics director position.

In the event that the University does reach out to Anderson, he said he doesn’t think the new contract would prevent possible negotiations, but “none of those discussions have taken place,” he said.

In late February, University President Eric Kaler assembled a 21-member search advisory committee and a four-person search committee to help assist him in selecting the next athletics director.

The committee hopes to have finalists by the end of April, and Kaler intends to name Maturi’s successor by early May.

Maturi’s tenure will officially end June 30.