Rick Rembielak, a three-time Mid-American Conference Coach of the Year who has compiled more than 500 career wins, enters his third season as head coach of the Akron baseball program in 2013.
Rembielak led the 2013 squad in his second year at the helm to four MAC series wins and a 10-16 in the conference record. Senior Jared Turocy finished his UA career with a second team All-MAC selection, and redshirt junior Brady Stewart collected a MAC East Player of the Week award. Rembielak brought in a good supply of youth for 2013, as 11 of the players on the roster were freshmen. Two of the freshmen were mainstays in the weekend rotation throughout the campaign.
In 2012, Rembielak’s first season at UA, the Zips earned a
series sweep over MAC foe Bowling Green - Akron’s first
conference sweep since 2009. Pitcher Andrew Brown finished his
career with a first team All-MAC selection and was selected in the
23rd round of the MLB Draft by the Colorado Rockies.
Additionally, Rembielak and the Akron baseball program helped produce the most influential Diamond Classic for the Kids in the six-year history of the event in 2012. Through community outreach and in conjunction with Kent State, the team was able to raise over $16,000 for the Akron Children’s Hospital - a record total for the event. The 2012 game was also played in front of an event-record crowd at Canal Park.
Rembielak, who has previously served as the head coach at Kent State University and Wake Forest University, is a Cleveland native and 1988 graduate of UA. He won four MAC regular season championships and three league tournament titles at KSU, where he remains the all-time winningest coach of any sport with a career record of 373-251-1 (.597).
Moreover, in 11 seasons as the Golden Flashes’ head coach, Rembielak was 200-100 (.667) against league members and led KSU to 11 consecutive MAC Tournament appearances. During that time, Rembielak produced seven MAC Pitchers of the Year and the MAC Player of the Year and MAC Freshman of the Year twice.
In his 17 seasons as a Division I head coach, Rembielak has had 36 players sign professional contracts, including pitcher John Van Benschoten, who was selected eighth overall by the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2001.
In June of 2004, Rembielak became the 24th head baseball coach at Wake Forest, where he spent five seasons. His impact was immediate as the Demon Deacons showed remarkable improvement during his first season. Wake not only improved its win total from the previous campaign by 11 games, but also captured eight more victories in league play.
In 2007, Rembielak led Wake Forest to its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2002. The Deacons’ postseason bid was due in large part to their strong showing at the 2007 ACC Championship, where they became only the second No. 8-seeded team in league history to play in the title game.
Rembielak’s Wake Forest teams also excelled in the classroom. During his tenure, his team’s Academic Progress Report (APR) improved each season from 965 in 2005 to 983 in 2009. Rembielak’s 2009 team received special recognition for their academic success.
In all, Rembielak, who spent the 2010-11 season as a volunteer assistant coach at Georgia Tech, owns a record of 545-468-1 (.525) over an 19-year career as a Division I head coach.
Rembielak was a three-year letter-winning shortstop at Miami (Ohio) from 1979-81 where he helped lead the ball club to a 36-13-1 MAC record and a league championship (1979). In 1981, Rembielak was drafted in the 13th round by the Baltimore Orioles and played with teams affiliated with the O’s, Chicago Cubs and Milwaukee Brewers over five seasons.
A graduate of Central Catholic High School in Cleveland, Rembielak earned a bachelor’s degree in business education from UA in 1988 and a master’s degree in sports administration from Kent State in 1992. He is a member of the Greater Akron Baseball Hall of Fame, the Stark County Hall of Fame and the Cleveland Central Catholic High School Hall of Fame. He was inducted in the Kent State Varsity “K” Hall of Fame in 2009.
Rembielak and his wife of 28 years, Sharon, have two daughters - Nicole (26) and Megan (23) - and one son - Matthew (20) - a junior infielder on the UA baseball team.