ESCANABA — Bay College has hired Mike Pankow as the first men’s baseball coach in program history. Pankow, most recently the Head Baseball Coach and Sports Information Director at the University of Maine at Presque Isle, is a native of Hortonville, WI. Pankow has been at UMPI for the past 4 years. During his tenure, the Owls enjoyed one of their most successful seasons in school history in 2016, a year in which Pankow was named the Association of Division III Independents Coach of the Year. During his four-year tenure the Owls produced 11 Academic All-Americans, and 14 All-AD3I selections.
“Coach Pankow’s accomplishments, both on and off the field are remarkable,” Bay athletic director Matt Johnson said in a statement. “Mike brings a wealth of collegiate experience with him, he is a proven recruiter, coach, and mentor. He has been a winner throughout his career, he comes with a proven track record as both a player and a coach. Mike is, without a doubt, the right person to lead our new program at Bay.”
As a Collegiate athlete, Pankow competed on both the baseball and basketball teams at Northland College (Ashland, WI) from 1999-2003. As a prep athlete, he was a member of the Hortonville High School baseball program that won 53 consecutive games and went undefeated, winning the 1997 and 1998 Wisconsin AA State Championships. Upon completion of his playing career, Coach Pankow worked for two years as an Assistant Coach with the Northland College Men’s Basketball Program from 2003 to 2005. During that time, he also took over as the Head Baseball Coach at Washburn High School (WI). Pankow also spent three years in the White Lake School District (WI) where he served as the Athletic Director, Head Baseball Coach, Girl’s Head Basketball Coach, and Physical Education Teacher. Northland called again and Pankow returned to the collegiate coaching ranks in 2010-11, when he became the Assistant Baseball Coach and Assistant Women’s Basketball Coach.
During Pankows’ tenure, the LumberJack Baseball Program saw an increase in wins from 10 in 2011 to 16 in 2013-the most successful season for the LumberJacks since 2006. The 2013 Northland Nine qualified for the Upper Midwest Athletic Conference (UMAC) championship tournament. In his time at Northland, five players were All-UMAC First team selections, six more
were named honorable mention All-UMAC and 19 earned All-Academic recognition. Active in the community, Pankow has coached in the Hortonville (WI) American Legion program since 2005, with his teams qualifying for the 16U State Tournament in 2007. He was invited to be a part of the coaching staffs of the Fox River Valley League All-Star Game in 2009 and 2013 and also the State Legion All-Star Game in Miller Park in 2011.
“First and foremost I would like to thank Dr. Coleman and Coach Johnson for the opportunity to join the Bay College family,” Pankow said. “Having seen the excitement surrounding the school and athletics it is a fantastic time to be joining the Norse Athletic Program. I am excited for this opportunity and to build a competitive program that gives young student-athletes a positive educational experience. I look forward to returning to the area and toward my future in the Norse Athletic Program.”
The Norse reinstated its athletic program, this Fall, with the addition of men’s and women’s basketball and men’s and women’s cross country. Baseball and softball will be begin play in the spring of 2019.
INFORMATION COURTESY OF BAY COLLEGE ATHLETICS.