Former LSU Standout Dean Named to UNO Baseball Staff
Former LSU All-American first baseman and outfielder Blake Dean will join the New Orleans baseball coaching staff as a volunteer assistant, head coach Ron Maestri announced Wednesday.
"Blake epitomizes what a student-athlete is supposed to be," said Maestri. "He was a great player and knows the value of an education, coming back after pro ball to make sure he got his degree."
"An outstanding teacher of the game, Blake is a very personable and moral person and we are so excited that he is joining our staff."
Dean will begin work in the office on Thursday at UNO after most recently serving as an undergraduate assistant in 2013 for an LSU squad that posted a 57-11 record and advanced to the College World Series.
Dean returned to Baton Rouge to finish his degree after playing two seasons in the Los Angeles Dodgers organization. The native of Crestview, Fla., was an eighth round selection of the Dodgers in the 2010 Major League Baseball draft.
Prior to being picked by the Dodgers, Dean put together impressive numbers from 2007 through 2010 for head coach Paul Mainieri's Tigers.
Dean's lengthy resume includes, among other honors, being named a 2007 Collegiate Baseball Freshman All-American, 2007 Louisiana Freshman of the Year, 2008 Louisiana Hitter of the Year, 2008 Baseball American First-Team All-American and 2009 First-Team All-SEC.
Primarily used as a first baseman during his senior campaign, Dean was twice named first-team All-Louisiana while being selected to the SEC All-Tournament team three times. He also received a nod in 2008 as the SEC Tournament's "Most Valuable Player".
Upon concluding his career, Dean ranked No. 2 in LSU history in total bases (575), No. 2 in RBIs (260), No. 2 in hits (332), No. 3 in doubles (63), No. 4 in home runs (56) and No. 5 in runs scored (223).
With Dean's addition, the Privateer baseball coaching staff now consists of four individuals who played NCAA Division I baseball as student-athletes. Maestri was an infielder for Bradley, while assistant James Jurries and Director of Baseball Operations Justin Garcia competed for Tulane and UNO, respectively.
Maestri anticipates naming a pitching coach in coming days to complete his staff.
The Privateers are currently slated to open their season on Friday, Feb. 14, 2014 at Alex Box Stadium in Baton Rouge, La. against LSU. UNO's home opener is the next day at a renovated Maestri Field with first pitch scheduled at 2 p.m.
The two-game opening series between the Tigers and Privateers will have extra meaning for Dean as his younger brother, Dakota, will begin his collegiate career as a freshman for LSU during the coming 2014 season.