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College Sports

Elmhurst College names new men's basketball coach

Former Bluejay assistant John Baines tabbed to take over

ELMHURST — John Baines, the head men’s basketball coach at the University of St. Francis, has reached a verbal agreement to become the head men’s basketball coach at Elmhurst College.

Baines will become the 15th men’s basketball head coach in Elmhurst history. He takes over for Mark Scherer, who announced his retirement from coaching after 17 seasons of leading the Bluejays. Baines spent 10 seasons as Scherer’s right-hand man in Elmhurst before becoming the head coach of St. Francis in 2010.

“I’m pleased to be able to welcome John Baines back to Elmhurst College,” said Elmhurst athletic director Paul Krohn in a release. “John has a proven track record of success both on the court and in recruiting and I’m excited to have back as part of our coaching staff.”

In his three seasons at St. Francis, Baines compiled a 57-38 overall record while coaching six all-conference performers, a conference Freshman of the Year award winner and a pair of NAIA All-Americans.

“I enjoyed my three years at St. Francis and am grateful that they gave me an opportunity to become a head coach," said Barnes in the release. "Having said that, I’m very much looking forward to returning to Elmhurst. Elmhurst is a great school with great leadership and plays in one of the marquis conferences in all of Division III. I was a part of some of the best years in men’s basketball history and I feel that we can get the program back to the top again.”

Baines played college basketball at Illinois Wesleyan University, a fellow College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin school. He was a part of teams that compiled a 103-14 record, played in the NCAA Tournament four times, reached the Final Four twice and won a national championship in 1997.

Baines earned his bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Illinois Wesleyan in 1998. He received a master’s degree in sports administration from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2013.

Baines currently resides in Chicago. He and his fiancé, Emily, are planning a September wedding.

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