Redbirds cheer their teammates from the dugout during a game against St. Francis last season.

Illinois State’s new head baseball coach Steve Holm has added the first piece to his coaching staff, ISU athletics confirmed Wednesday.

Holm brings in a familiar face, former Purdue recruiting coordinator, hitting coach and defensive instructor Wally Crancer to the Redbirds.

“I’m extremely excited to announce Wally Crancer as the assistant head coach and recruiting coordinator at Illinois State,” Holm said, “being able to hire someone who has multiple years of experience as a power five recruiting coordinator will quickly pay dividends for the Redbirds.” 

Crancer’s recruits played a big role in the Boilermakers program-best’s 38 wins last season and 19-win improvement the season before that. 

Wally Crancer mugshot

Former Purdue assistant Wally Crancer has been hired as recruiting coordinator and assistant head coach to Steve Holm at Illinois State.

“My family and I are excited to join Coach Holm and the Redbird program,” Crancer said, “Steve is a great baseball coach, an even better person, and the opportunity to work with him and rest of the staff was too good to pass up.”

Purdue went on a 21-3 stretch in the second half of last season to secure a No. 2 seed for its program’s third NCAA Tournament appearance.

“Steve and I had great chemistry and success working together at Purdue and I am looking forward to doing my part in helping us reach the next level and bring championships here to Illinois State,” Crancer said.

Crancer graduated from Georgia Tech and started two seasons as an outfielder, where he batted .345 with 22 doubles, 14 home runs and 82 RBI in 90 career starts.

He was drafted in the 12th round of the 2007 Major League Baseball Draft by the Baltimore Orioles.

He served as an assistant coach at Georgia Tech in 2012 and 2013. The Yellow Jackets won the 2012 ACC Tournament and finished as a Regional runner-up in each of the two seasons he spent with them.

KADE HEATHER is Sports Editor for The Vidette. He can be contacted at Follow him on Twitter at @kade_heather

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