Basil was appointed head coach News, Sports, Work

Jordan Basile

FREDONIA. Jordan Basil served as the interim baseball coach at Fredonia State University last season.

Now the 2009 graduate can remove the intermediate mark.

Blue Devils athletic director Jerry Fisk named Basile the program’s new head baseball coach on Friday.

“It’s the best feeling in the world” Basil said on Saturday afternoon. “That’s what was in the back of my mind, I was hoping it would be, but you don’t know until you get it.”

The school conducted an all-Ukrainian search for the next head coach. Several candidates were interviewed by the search committee and Fisk.

“I am very grateful for the opportunity to coach at Fredonia State and return to my alma mater.” Basil said.

The 2005 Jamestown High School graduate was Fredonia’s 2009 All-State hitter and was later inducted into the university’s Hall of Fame. He was named SUNYAC All-Conference and All-Region multiple times as a player.

“It was the best experience of my life in four years. I didn’t know what I wanted to do other than play baseball in college. I wouldn’t change the opportunity to go to Fredonia.” Basil said. “We have good facilities and good people around us, good support in athletics and administration. I can confidently tell a player that these have been the best four years of my life, this is not advertising.”

Before being named interim coach of the Blue Devils in January, Basile was the head coach at Jamestown College for 2 1/2 years.

Fredonia State finished 10-24 last spring, including 1-17 in SUNYAC play. The Blue Devils’ last winning season came in 2018 when they went 17-13. They haven’t finished .500 or better in the conference since going 9-9 in 2016.

This spring, Oswego finished first in the regular season with a 16-2 conference record, while Cortland was 15-3 and Brockport was 13-5. Cortland won the conference tournament.

“Instead of comparing ourselves to Brockport and Cortland and Oswego, we just realize that we can do it too. … Fredonia is becoming a destination.” Basil said. “Those coaches did a great job, but now it’s our time. We want to talk about Fredonia, not the other guys.’

Basil has 12 years of experience at many levels. He assisted one season at Fredonia State after graduating. He transferred to the NCAA Division I University at Buffalo as an assistant. He earned his master’s degree in coaching at NCAA Division II Lake Erie College before heading to NJCAA Division II Patrick Henry Community College — first as an assistant coach before taking over the program for two seasons. In his first year as the head coach at PHCC, he found his team within one game of the NJCAA Division I World Series with a 38-16-1 record and compiled a two-season mark of 64-32-1.

“Going to a four-year program is definitely different, but this year we faced a unique situation, losing 16 seniors and bringing in 16 players in four months.” Basil said. “With my JUCO background, I’m used to recruiting 20 new guys a year. As a JUCO coach, you try to send guys to a four-year program. I hope Fredonia becomes a destination for local JUCO players.”

Basile coached over 10 players who were selected in the MLB draft and two of them reached the Major Leagues. He was already preparing for next season, despite not knowing whether he would be a permanent coach. Now he can tell future players what will happen.

“You always want to start in our area and state, but we have a great neighborhood program at Fredonia for student-athletes from Pennsylvania, Ohio, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Virginia who can also pay in-state tuition.” Basil said. “We’re also getting two more guys from the rest of the country who can pay for in-state tuition.”

In 2011, Basile worked in player development in the Detroit Tigers organization and participates in Secrets of Champions as an integrated performance coach. He also managed the Jamestown Tarp Skunks of the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League the past two summers.

Basile will succeed his former coach Matt Pelisin after 19 years at the helm. Basile was part of the school’s most successful season in 2009, when they went 26-12 and hosted the ECAC Regional Tournament, as well as winning the SUNYAC batting title.

“I still call him coach because he’s one of the biggest mentors in my life. I couldn’t have asked for a better coach and person to guide me through my baseball career.” Vasyl said about Palisin. “The opportunity to lead it is the best feeling in the world. My job is to do as well as he did, making better players and better people.”

NCAA Division III programs can practice 16 times in the fall and play one game.

“We have a full list” Basil said “and we’re ready to go.”

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