Former Lions Playing in 2014 World Series
A pair of former University of North Alabama baseball players will be on opposite sides in the 2014 World Series when Josh Willingham and the Kansas City Royals take on Sergio Romo and the San Francisco Giants. This will be the first World Series trip for Willingham, an 11-year Major League veteran. It will be the third World Series trip for Romo in the last five years with the Giants.
Mike Keehn has completed seven seasons as the head baseball coach at the University of North Alabama and has been a part of the Lions’ coaching staff for the last 27 years.
After 20 seasons as an assistant coach at UNA, Keehn was given the reigns of the Lion baseball program on November 2, 2008, when he was named as UNA’s head baseball coach. Keehn, who had been an instrumental part of North Alabama’s tremendous success over the last two decades, first as a student assistant and then as a full-time assistant coach, has responded by leading the Lions to an overall 218-140-1 record over the last seven years, including back-to-back NCAA Regional Tournament appearances in 2011 and 2012. The 2011 NCAA trip was the first by a UNA team in 12 years.
In his first season as head coach at UNA, Keehn led the Lions to an impressive 32-20 record. Then in 2010, despite two key losses to the UNA pitching staff just prior to the start of the season, he led the Lions to a solid fourth place finish in the Gulf South Conference Tournament and a 29-24 overall record.
Matt Hancock has completed 10 seasons as a member of the University of North Alabama coaching staff and seven as the Lions’ full-time assistant coach.
Hancock was a one-year student assistant coach with the Lions and served two years as a graduate assistant before being elevated to the assistant’s position prior to the 2009 season. His primary duties have been with the UNA pitchers.
He has helped lead the Lions to a 218-140-1 record over the last seven seasons, including back-to-back NCAA South Region Tournament berths in 2011 and 2012.
Nick McGregor is entering his third season as a member of the University of North Alabama coaching staff and his first as a full-time assistant coach. McGregor served as a graduate assistant coach for the Lions in 2014 and 2015.
A two-year starter for the Lions at shortstop in 2010 and 2011, McGregor helped lead the Lions to an NCAA South Regional Tournament appearance as a senior.
He started all 53 games in 2011, hitting .237 with 29 runs scored and 21 runs batted in. He boasted a .330 on base percentage. As a senior he started 36 games and played in 40, finishing the season with a .293 batting average and .371 on base percentage. He scored 27 runs and drove in 20, while adding 12 stolen bases.