West Coast Baseball Recruiting: How Conference Realignment Will Change College Baseball With Cal Head Coach, Mike Neu

Mike Neu is the head baseball coach at the University of California Berkeley. Coach Neu will be entering his sixth season as head coach of the Golden Bears, and tenth season on the staff. Coach Neu also has experience coaching at the University of the Pacific and Diablo Valley College. As a player, he played at the JUCO level for Sacramento City College and eventually transferred to the University of Miami. He went on to play for the Dodgers, Marlins, A’s, and Reds organizations and was eventually called up to the Major Leagues with the A’s. For this week’s episode of The Prospect Blueprint, Coach Neu talks all things JUCO, Division I, the Pac-12 conference realignment, and more. 

Cal’s Pitch to Prospects

Rick Dempsey: What is your approach [to getting recruits to come to Cal]?

Mike Neu: It’s never-ending, really… We’re just trying to create a daily routine where these guys are going to get better on and off the field. 

JUCO vs High School Recruits

Kelly Kleinman: How fertile a recruiting ground is JUCO right now…vs. High school recruits and other portal players that might become available?

Mike Neu: When I was in junior college, it was very competitive…It’s a tough level for a freshman to play right away.

Conference Realignment: the Pac-12 Implosion

Kelly Kleinman: How is [the conference realignment] going to affect the baseball program now that you will be playing in the ACC next year?

Mike Neu: I’m obviously sad that the Pac-12 is no longer going to be around. I think my first choice would be that we still have the Pac-12.

The Type of Pitchers Recruiters are Looking For

Rick Dempsy: Is velocity the most important thing when getting a pitcher that can throw the ball over the plate, change speeds, and get you out of a lot of tough innings?

Mike Neu: Our philosophy is that everything is going to work off of that fast ball. 

How Cal Recruits

Rick Dempsey: For players who want you to see them, what opportunities do you give them?

Mike Neu: For me, the best game I could see is a high school game. 

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