28 Rick Vanderhook
28 Rick Vanderhook
Phone: (657) 278-3789
Email: csufbaseball@fullerton.edu
Birth Date: 05/13/1961
Hometown: Yorba Linda, Calif.
High School: Lakewood HS
Previous College: Trinity University
Position: Head Coach (6th Season)
Experience: (197-103)

After two seasons at the helm of the Cal State Fullerton baseball program, head coach Rick Vanderhook quickly ingrained a hard-working philosophy, and he was rewarded with a five-year contract extension through the 2018 season on April 15, 2013. He signed a contract revision on Oct. 13, 2015 which extended his deal through the 2019 season and included an increase in base pay as well as an increased bonus structure for him and his coaching staff.  It also included an automatic extension clause contingent on the Titans reaching the NCAA Super Regional round.

The 2016 season was his 26th year as a Titan, and his fifth as the program’s skipper.

During the past five years, Vanderhook has won four Big West Conference championships, garnered four Big West Coach of the Year awards and has guided the Titans to five straight NCAA postseason appearances. The Titans made their 17th apperance in the NCAA College World Series in 2015, ending a five-year drought which was the longest in program history.

The individual success hasn’t hindered the team success as Vanderhook’s head coaching record stands at 196-103 (.656) through the 2016 season.

In 2016, Vanderhook earned his fourth Big West Conference Coach of the Year award in five seasons. He led the Titans to a 36-23 record during the season and  a Big West Confernce title, the 21st in the program’s history and his fourth in five years. Fullerton advanced to the NCAA Postseason for the 25th straight season and recorded a 30-win season for the 42nd straight year.

In 2015, Vanderhook was named the American Baseball Coaches Association West Region Coach of the Year.

There have been 25 Titans selected in the MLB First-Year Player Draft in Vanderhook’s five seasons at Fullerton, including seven more in 2016. He has also coached 18 All-Americans and 10 Big West Conference Player of the Year honorees, including the Field Player of the Year (Dalton Blaser) and Freshman Pitcher of the Year (Colton Eastman) in 2016.

Vanderhook also led the Titans to a 51-10 record in 2013, the second best winning percentage (.836) in program history, trailing only the national championship squad from 1995 (57-9, .864). The 51 wins were also the fourth most in program history.

In five years, Vanderhook has led the Titans to four conference titles, two Super Regionals appearances and one College World Series appearance. He reached 100 head coaching victories on March 23, 2014 against Long Beach State at Goodwin Field, becoming the second fastest coach in Titans history to reach the mark, doing so in 139 games, four more than Titans legendary coach Augie Garrido.

On June 24, 2011, Vanderhook was announced as the program’s fifth Division I head coach. He will enter his 26th season with the Titan baseball program in 2015 after surpassing Garrido as the longest-serving baseball coach in school history.

Prior to being named the head coach at Cal State Fullerton, in 24 seasons as a Division I assistant coach (21 at Fullerton), Vanderhook accumulated a total of 12 conference championships, 20 postseason appearances, eight Super Regionals appearances, 11 trips to the College World Series and two national championships.

Vanderhook spent the better part of a quarter century under head coaches Garrido, Larry Cochell and George Horton.

He began his coaching career as an assistant to Garrido from 1985-87, serving as the bullpen coach for the first two years before stepping into the third base coaching box and working with the hitters and defense in 1987.  He remained on staff in 1988 under Cochell but then spent two seasons (1989-1990) as an assistant to former Fullerton assistant coach Bill Kernen at Cal State Northridge.  Vanderhook returned to Cal State Fullerton with Garrido in 1991 and remained through the 2007 season.

Vanderhook then spent three seasons (2009-11) as an assistant coach to John Savage at UCLA, where he helped lead the Bruins to a conference title, a pair of postseason appearances and a runner-up finish at the 2010 College World Series.

A product of the prominent Cerritos College program where he played for Horton, Vanderhook originally came to the Titans in 1983 when he took a redshirt season. He was a member of the Titans’ 1984 national championship team, earning his first of three Cal State Fullerton championship rings.

Vanderhook prepped at Lakewood High School and received his bachelor’s degree in physical education from Trinity University in 2003.

Vanderhook and his wife, April, reside in Yorba Linda, Calif., with their daughters, Noelle and Autumn, and their son, R.J.


"Rick comes from a great baseball family and he has worked hard for this opportunity. He represents the essence of Titans baseball. He represents the spirit of the baseball program at Cal State Fullerton and I am very happy for him and his family."

-- University of Texas Head Coach Augie Garrido

"Cal State Fullerton baseball's administration has made a great selection in Rick Vanderhook as their new baseball coach. He is one of the top coaches in the country and has a very bright baseball mind. He is an exceptional coach, recruiter and mentor of players. He has been an ambassador at Fullerton and UCLA and the job he has done as an assistant coach at both universities has been exemplary. He has been an instrumental part of three decades of Titan baseball excellence and now gets the opportunity to sit in the head coach's chair. I'm sure Rick will continue the great heritage of Titan baseball into the future. I congratulate Rick and his family for an opportunity that they all deserve. I wish him well."

-- University of Oregon Head Coach George Horton

"Rick did an outstanding job for our program the last three years. I am very excited for him and his new opportunity, one that is well-deserved."

-- UCLA Head Coach John Savage

"Congratulations to Rick "Hooky" Vanderhook. It is a great day for Titan Baseball when a coach, friend and mentor for hundreds of players over the course of 20-plus years is hired to lead the Titan program. There is no doubt that Hooky represents what Titan Baseball is all about and will continue to teach these young players the hard work and traditions that makes TITAN BASEBALL what it is."

-- Former Titan catcher and U.S. Olympian Brian Loyd

"I am very excited about the decision the Cal State Fullerton administration has made to bring back Rick Vanderhook as its head coach. If anything is guaranteed from this hire it is that the Titans will be tough and competitive. Rick knows what it takes to be successful and he has instilled it in me and the hundreds of other players he has coached over the last 26 years."

-- Former Titan infielder and current New York Mets second baseman Justin Turner


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