MONROE, La. – ULM Director of Athletics Scott McDonald announced the signing of head baseball coach Michael Federico to a contract extension through the 2024 season.
Federico’s contract extension increases his base salary from $120,000 to $126,000. The contract includes competition incentives.
“In four seasons, Michael Federico has put ULM baseball back on the national map,” McDonald said. “Fed and his staff have done an incredible job of not only identifying and recruiting top prospects, but I’ve been equally impressed by the development of those players while in this program. His 2020 team produced a number of signature wins over Top-10 opponents.
“In addition, Fed and his staff have energized this community and our fan base, not only with the impressive wins and team’s aggressive style of play but through his efforts to raise the program’s awareness through youth clinics and camps.
“Our baseball program is in capable hands and its best days are ahead. I’m confident Fed will build a program that can consistently compete for Sun Belt Conference Championships.”
In 2021, Federico’s Warhawks achieved a .500 record in a full season for the first time since 2012, finishing 26-26. ULM also placed third in the Sun Belt Conference West Division, which was its highest spot in the conference standings since 2012. The Warhawks knocked off four Top-10 opponents in the season, picking up a win at No. 3 Ole Miss, a midweek win over No. 9 Oklahoma State at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas, and a series win at No. 6 TCU. ULM earned series victories in each of its final six series of the season and knocked off SEC foe Alabama.
“I’m honored to continue to lead the ULM baseball program,” Federico said. “I appreciate Dr. Berry, Scott McDonald and the University for trusting me to continue to move Warhawk baseball toward becoming a winning program.”
Individually, Federico coached junior third baseman Grant Schulz and sophomore second baseman Travis Washburn to Second Team All-Sun Belt Conference honors in 2021. He guided the Warhawk pitching staff to a 4.86 ERA while Lucas Wepf (2.36 ERA, 2-0, 3 saves), Trey Lindsay (3.18 ERA, 2-2, 3 saves) and Carson Orton (3.37 ERA, 0-2, 9 saves) formed a dynamic trio out of the bullpen, setting the team single-season saves record with 16.
“The last four years have been a challenge, but as a program, we’ve taken significant steps in the right direction,” Federico said. “It’s been a lot of fun working with my coaching staff and our players to showcase our program throughout the state of Louisiana, around the Sun Belt Conference and on the national stage. We posted some great wins last season, defeating four Top-10 opponents.”
“I look forward to the planned facility upgrades as well as working with our great campus and local communities to help the ULM baseball program reach new heights.”
Federico’s 2020 squad was primed to show the growth in the program. The Warhawks started the season 12-2 before dropping the final three games before the season ended abruptly due to the COVID-19 pandemic. At the time of the stoppage, ULM led the Sun Belt Conference in batting average (.311, 15th NCAA DI), on base percentage (.433, 4th DI), runs scored (155, 7th DI), scoring (9.1 rpg., 5th DI), stolen bases (36, 10th DI) base on balls (105, 4th DI) and triples (6).
In 2019, Federico led the Warhawks to a four-win improvement over 2018, and a return to the Sun Belt Conference tournament. ULM won three games in the tournament and reached the semifinals. Third baseman Chad Bell slugged a school-record 21 home runs and was selected first team All-Sun Belt Conference, while utility player Andrew Beesley earned second team All-SBC honors. Bell was also named to the American Baseball Coaches Association All-Region team. Bell (19th round), outfielder Trent Tingelstad (22nd round) and pitcher Trey Jeans (33rd round) were each selected in the 2019 MLB Draft. Pitcher Cole Gray was signed as a free agent by the Oakland Athletics.
In his first season with the Warhawks, ULM nearly doubled its win total from 2017, posting 23 victories while the team earned run average dropped by over half a run. Federico also coached relief pitcher Keegan Curtis, who was selected in the 22nd round of the 2018 MLB Draft by the New York Yankees, after Curtis posted a 2.88 ERA with seven saves.