College Baseball

C-SC hires Unger to reinvigorate baseball program

Culver-Stockton College baseball coach Brad Unger
By Herald-Whig
Posted: Jun. 12, 2019 12:20 am Updated: Jun. 12, 2019 12:46 am

CANTON, Mo. -- By the time his interview was finished, Brad Unger didn't want to leave.

That's all Culver-Stockton College athletic director Pat Atwell needed to know.

Atwell officially introduced Unger as the Wildcats' new baseball coach Tuesday, less than three weeks after the school decided not to renew the contract of Kevin Kochs following eight seasons at the helm.

"Pat asked me if I could see myself here," said Unger, who spent the past five seasons coaching at Waubonsee Community College in Suger Grove, Ill. "When you're interviewing, you're getting small pieces of the college at a time. By the end of the day, after all the tours and meeting with the senior leadership team and all the other coaches on staff, there was no question this was home."

Atwell, a former college baseball coach himself, felt that vibe.

"We hit it off when we talked," Atwell said. "He said a lot of things I enjoyed."

Specifically, Atwell saw how Unger consistently won at Waubonsee despite being a part-time coach.

"If you can win at Waubonsee, you know how to win," Atwell said.

In five seasons, Unger led the Chiefs to a 141-116-1 record, including a school-record 37 victories in 2016 when they reached the NJCAA Division III World Series. Waubonsee went 30-23 this past spring.

"I'm a player development guy," Unger said. "Through and through, I run a teach-heavy program. My mantra is, ‘measure, quantify and defend.' We take the latest in technology and we use that to train our players in their kinematic sequence within their kinetic chain. It's very scientific, almost a laboratory-type setting.

"We spend a lot of time on the technical skill development and a great deal of time on the tactical development for the team."

Unger is devoted to the game beyond his own team.

While coaching at Waubonsee, he served as the assistant regional director for the Great Lakes Region with USA Baseball. His duties and role with USA Baseball will shift -- he will serve as the coordinator for Missouri -- but he will remain heavily involved year round.

All the while, he will be taxed with turning around a program that once was a yearly contender for the NAIA World Series. The Wildcats went 20-29 this past spring with a 12-16 mark in the Heart of America Athletic Conference. They lost 10-5 to Baker in the opening round of the Heart Tournament and haven't played in the NAIA Tournament in five years.

"I like his connections and his understanding of how transfers work and the ability to get kids into the right programs," Atwell said. "I really like his energy. This is a real positive."

Unger echoed that.

"It's a beautiful campus, but the people were just amazing," Unger said. "It was really just a great fit."