Beginning March 1st, Carl Sandburg College athletic director, women’s basketball coach, and women’s golf coach Mike Bailey will be stepping down. Bailey, however, won’t be going far: he will be moving into an academic advising role where he will be advising student-athletes. Bailey has been with Sandburg since 1997, he coached men’s basketball for 10 seasons and baseball for seven. Bailey’s men’s basketball team finished as a runner-up in the 2002 Region IV tournament. He took over the women’s basketball program in 2007 where the women finished 5th in the NJCAA Division II national tournament in 2007 and 8th in 2008. The women won three Arrowhead Conference titles: in ’08, ’16 and ’17 and were Region IV tournament runners-up in ’09 and ’17. Last year, the women finished 11th in the NJCAA Women’s Golf Championship. Chargers teams have claimed eight conference titles, four Region IV championships, eight Region IV runner-up finishes and qualified for nine NJCAA tournaments with Bailey as AD. “I enjoy being at Carl Sandburg College,” Bailey told WGIL. “I like the camaraderie we have out there (and) the people we have out there. The stress level of the different positions and responsibilities….I had basically already decided that I was done. But I didn’t want that. I talked to my wife, I was like, ‘What if, there was something else?’ This was a great opportunity and I’m very excited that it worked out.”
Since becoming Athletic Director in 2013, Chargers student-athletes have seen unprecedented success in the classroom. The CSC record for Academic All-Arrowhead Conference recipients was broken three times during Bailey’s tenure, most recently this past spring as 51 Chargers recorded at least a 3.0-grade point average in 2018-19. He also helped Sandburg start its new intercollegiate esports program. Seventy-three Chargers student-athletes earned spots on the Sandburg Dean’s List or Honors List for the 2019 fall semester, which was a record. CSC had 61 student-athletes and 13 teams earn NJCAA All-Academic awards with Bailey as AD, including a school-best 19 student-athletes in 2015-16.