Following a steady uptick in wins in his first three seasons with Maryland baseball, Terps head coach Erik Bakich appears to be headed to a different U of M to continue his coaching career.
The University of Michigan is reportedly close to making a lucrative offer to Bakich, who guided Maryland to just its second winning season since 2002.
On Tuesday afternoon, Perfect Game USA's Kendall Rogers tweeted "All signs at this point on #Michigan gig point to #Maryland coach Erik Bakich. With Stricklin out, that'd be a nice hire. #bigten."
Sources say Michigan will offer more than $400,000 in annual salary -- approximately four times the size of Bakich's deal at Maryland.
Prior to hiring Bakich, the Terps fired Terry Rupp, who went 415-324 in 13 years at Maryland, including 149-184 in his final six seasons.
The Terps have not reached the NCAA Tournament since 1971 or the ACC Tournament since 2005. But under Bakich, previously an assistant coach at Vanderbilt, the future looked promising.
The Terps won just 17 games in 2010 and 21 in 2011, but improved to 32 wins this past season in Bakich's third year under the helm.
Bakich is known for his recruiting prowess, and in his first season landed a top 25 class according to Baseball America, the first-ever time the Terps ranked among the top 25 in recruiting rankings. He followed that up with another top 25 class this year, according to Perfect Game USA.
Bakich helped Maryland greatly improve its facilities, including upgrades to the Bob "Turtle" Smith Stadium and practice facilities.
The move would be a huge blow to Terps baseball -- arguably enough to consider shutting the team down.
With Maryland in dire straits financially, a nonrevenue sport like baseball could conceivably be among future varsity sports cut. Last July, school president Wallace Loh announced plans to evaluate the athletic department's individual sports, and in November, he announced eight sports would be cut -- baseball excluded.
But without a star head coach like Bakich, the Terps could justify cutting the sport and saving money, rather than hiring a coach of Rupp's caliber and drifting along the bottom of the ACC for the foreseeable future.