New Hitting Coach Looks To Help Take Rebels To Next Level
Mike Clement joined the Ole Miss coaching staff for the 2015 season after spending the two seasons at Kansas State University. He currently serves as the team’s hitting coach and third base coach.
During his first year as the Rebels’ hitting coach, Clement helped lead the Rebels to the postseason after facing the nation’s toughest schedule during the regular season. Ole Miss broke out the bats to go 7-6 against top-10 teams, including 5-4 versus teams ranked No. 1 in the country. Ole Miss cracked double digits in runs nine different times, while recording 10-or-more hits in 22 games throughout the 2015 campaign.
In 2015, Clement worked with youthful Ole Miss bats while also continuing to develop the production of Rebels with experience in the lineup. With Clement’s guidance, junior college transfer Connor Cloyd earned his way into a starting role, hitting .369 over 38 games played in 2015. Freshman Will Golsan and sophomore Colby Bortles, two new starters in the Ole Miss infield, found success at the plate throughout the season as well. Golsan hit at a .290 clip in his first collegiate season, and Bortles proved he could produce in the middle of the order with a .281 average and 47 RBI.
Transitioning into his sophomore season, shortstop Errol Robinson maintained his production under Clement with a team-high 62 hits and a .297 average. In his first season at Ole Miss, Clement also saw Ole Miss senior slugger Sikes Orvis etch his name in the program record book. Orvis belted 16 home runs in his final season as a Rebel, the seventh-most in Ole Miss history, and added 17 doubles to help knock in a team-best 53 runs.
In two years as hitting coach at K-State, Clement made an immediate impact on the Wildcat offense, raising it to not only among the Big 12 Conference's best, but also near the top of the national leaderboard.
Named the K-State hitting coach in July of 2012, Clement led the Wildcat offense to nation's second-best batting average in 2013 while the team went on to capture the Big 12 title, host and win its first NCAA Regional, and come within one victory of the program making its first trip to the College World Series. In addition to a high national ranking in batting average, the Wildcats were also ranked in the top 10 nationally in six other categories, finishing fifth in hits (705), triples (28) and sacrifice flies (40), eighth in triples per game (0.44) and on-base percentage (.406), and 10th in hit-by-pitch (96). The Wildcats paced the Big 12 in each of those categories in addition to RBI (368) and steals (99).
In 2014, the Wildcats were second among Big 12 teams in OBP (.385), third in runs per game (5.8), and fourth in team batting average (.283). Nationally, K-State was 25th in OBP and tied for 18th in stolen bases.
Clement, a veteran coach with nine years of experience at the Division I level and strong recruiting ties in the state of Texas, tutored a pair of All-Americans, seven All-Big 12 performers, and four MLB draft picks who went on to play professionally. Ross Kivett, the Big 12's Player of the Year in 2013, was one of seven hitters in Clement's first year that earned All-Big 12 honors, a group that included six first team selections. Kivett joined fellow All-Big 12 First Team selection Jared King as the two Wildcats who also garnered All-American accolades in 2013. King went on to be selected in the fifth round of the MLB Draft by the New York Mets, which was the first time he had been drafted.
Kivett was also drafted in 2013, in the 10th round by the Cleveland Indians, but he elected to return for his senior season. The outfielder and second baseman received All-Big 12 honors once again while he was one of three hitters under Clement's direction taken in the 2014 MLB Draft. Kivett was selected in the sixth round by the Detroit Tigers - the fourth hitter drafted in the sixth round or higher who had worked with Clement since 2006 - and Mitch Meyer and Austin Fisher were taken in the seventh and 13th round, respectively. In nine years at the Division I level, Clement has had 17 players get selected in the MLB Draft.
Prior to coming to K-State, Clement was on the staff at Texas A&M for three years after spending the previous four seasons at UTSA, including the final three as the team's hitting coach. In addition to helping the Wildcats reach the Super Regional round in 2013, Clement has been a member of three other postseason teams, including a trip to the 2011 College World Series.
Texas A&M advanced to postseason play each year Clement was a part of the coaching staff. He helped guide the Aggies to both the Big 12 conference regular-season and postseason championship titles in 2011 on their way to a College World Series appearance. In 2010, Texas A&M won the Big 12 Championship and advanced to the championship game of the NCAA Coral Gables Regional, while the Aggies hosted a NCAA Regional in 2012.
Clement helped direct an Aggie offense in 2012 that led the Big 12 and ranked fourth nationally with 129 steals. Also, Clement coached the Texas A&M infielders that saw its 2011 squad decrease its errors by 23 from the previous year and finish in the top 25 nationally with a .975 fielding percentage.
During his time at UTSA from 2006-09, Clement helped the Roadrunners accumulate a 144-81 overall record - including an impressive 84-40 mark in Southland Conference play - win two Southland Conference regular-season titles, tutor 16 hitters that earned All-Southland Conference honors and set 30 offensive school records. Additionally, UTSA saw its team batting average jump 32 points from .285 the year before he took over the offense to .317 during his final season, a mark that still stands as the school record.
In his final year as the hitting coach in San Antonio, Clement steered an offense that rewrote the record books as he helped the Roadrunners win a school-record 39 games. Along the way, UTSA set new highs in five offensive categories, including home runs, hits and batting average. UTSA finished in the top 25 nationally in triples (11th; 25), slugging percentage (20th; .532) and home runs (21st; 89), while the 2009 squad also stole 79 bases to rank third in school history, the most since a school-record 92 in 1999.
Clement tutored just the second All-American in UTSA history in Michael Rockett. The outfielder, who was a four-time All-Southland Conference performer, was drafted in the 13th round of the 2009 MLB Draft by Detroit.
Prior to his stint at UTSA, Clement served as an assistant for one year at Kirkwood Junior College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. He began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Morningside College in Sioux City, Iowa, and then spent one year at Loyola High School in Los Angeles. He was also an assistant coach for the Orleans Cardinals in the prestigious Cape Cod Baseball League in the summers of 2005 and 2006, including a Cape Cod Championship in 2005.
A former college catcher, Clement played two seasons at Kirkwood, helping the Eagles compile a 91-25 record. He finished his college career at Morningside, where he earned his bachelor's degree in physical education/secondary education in 2002. Following college, the Marshalltown, Iowa, native played professionally one season for the Canton Coyotes of the Frontier League.
Clement comes from a baseball background as his father, Brad, was a legendary head coach at Marshalltown (Iowa) High School, helping the Bobcats win three state championships before being inducted into the Iowa High School Hall of Fame. Clement's younger brother, Jeff, was drafted in the first round of the 2005 Major League Baseball Draft by the Seattle Mariners. The eight-year veteran spent time in the majors with Seattle and Pittsburgh before retiring prior to the start of the 2014 season.
Clement is married to the former Amanda Rosenberg of Kingwood, Texas.
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