Jeff Jenkins enters his 25th year as head baseball coach at Rose-Hulman and will serve as athletic director for the 12th year. The Fightin' Engineer baseball program has reached five NCAA Division III Tournaments, won four conference tournament titles and claimed three league regular season championships in his era.
Jenkins has rewritten the Rose-Hulman single-season school record for victories in baseball five times, including a historic 2004 season for a team that won 36 games and the second consecutive Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference Eastern Division baseball championship.
Jenkins led the 1992, 1996, 2008, 2009 and 2010 squads to NCAA Division III Tournament appearances and also won the 1995 and 1996 Indiana Collegiate Athletic Conference postseason tournament titles. The Fightin' Engineers also won Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference baseball tournaments in 2009 and 2010.
His efforts also included conference regular season championships in 1994, 1996 and 2012. Jenkins was named league Coach of the Year during each of his three championship regular seasons.
Jenkins, who owns the most wins and highest winning percentage in school history (.630), won his 600th game at Rose-Hulman during the 2013 season. His career record is 646-433-2, and his Rose-Hulman record is 601-368-1.
As associate athletic director for the decade prior to his promotion, Jenkins was one of several forces behind the college's move to coeducational athletics in 1995, construction of the Sports and Recreation Center, and the school's hosting roles in the NCAA III National Championships for women's basketball, golf and indoor track and field.
Rose-Hulman's baseball facilities have also improved dramatically under Jenkins' watch. His efforts helped the Engineers land the 2005, 2006, 2008 and 2013 NCAA Division III Mideast Baseball Regionals, which sent Wooster, Marietta, Adrian and Manchester into the Division III World Series. Lights were added to the facility in 2001, with new dugouts and a club-seat, press box structure completed in 2004.
Rose-Hulman also hosted the 1996 and 2012 Indiana Collegiate and Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference postseason tournaments after earning regular season league titles. In addition, Jenkins and the Fightin' Engineers hosted the 2003 Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference tournament.
Prior to Jenkins' arrival on campus, the Engineers had recorded just one 20-win season. During his 24-year tenure, Rose-Hulman has recorded twenty-one 20-win campaigns and five 30-win seasons.
Rose-Hulman has also sent four players to minor league baseball under Jenkins. Pitchers Eric Tryon and Matt Sims continued their careers after completing their Fightin' Engineer careers, with Tryon reaching the AA level in the Cincinnati Reds organization. Tryon, 1999 graduate Andy Cain, 2008 graduate Michael Matsui and 2011 graduate Tim Tepe earned All-American honors under Jenkins' watch.
Derek Eitel became the first Rose-Hulman student-athlete selected in a professional sports draft with his 17th round selection from the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2010. Keenan Long also enjoyed a strong career in the independent leagues after earning honorable mention All-American honors and graduating in 2010.
Jenkins started his coaching career at Heidelberg College in Ohio in 1987, inheriting a team that won only six games in the four previous seasons. He led Heidelberg to 15 wins in his first season, and was named the Ohio Athletic Conference Coach of the Year in 1988. He coached at Bethany College (W.V.) one season before coming to Rose-Hulman.
The Urbana, Ohio, native and Ohio Northern University graduate chaired the NCAA Division III Mideast Regional Committee from 1996-2001. That committee makes the selection of participants for the NCAA III Tournament.
Jenkins and his wife, Cindy, have two sons, Travis and Justin.
Sean Bendel begins his 16th season as assistant baseball coach at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology this fall.
Bendel served as an assistant coach at Metropolitan State College for three years and received a bachelor's degree in human performance, sport, and leisure in 1997.
The Engineers have compiled a record of 395-235-1 in the 15 seasons that Bendel has served as assistant coach. Team accomplishments include a school record 36 wins in 2004; trips to the NCAA Division III Baseball Tournament in 2008, 2009 and 2010; Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference Baseball Tournament titles in 2009 and 2010; an HCAC regular season championship in 2012; and Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference Eastern Division Championships in 1999, 2003, 2004 and 2006.
He also served as an assistant football and baseball coach at Northglenn High School in Colorado from 1996-98 and has been involved in coaching at various levels for nearly 25 years.
Bendel and his wife Kathleen relocated to Terre Haute in 1998. Bendel earned a master's degree in physical education and coaching at Indiana State in December 1999.
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