March 21, 2000
KALAMAZOO -- Western Michigan is predicted to finish second in the 2000 Mid-American Conference West Division standings according to the MAC Baseball Preseason Coaches Poll.
The Broncos totaled 58 points in the voting. Ball State was picked first in the MAC West with all 12 first-place votes and 72 points. Central Michigan (42), Toledo (37), Eastern Michigan (28), and Northern Illinois (15) round out the rest of the MAC West poll.
Miami University was picked first in the East, but Bowling Green earned seven first-place votes to the RedHawks' five. Miami totaled 63 points, edging BGSU's 62. Kent (49), Ohio (40), Akron (24), and Marshall (14) were predicted to finish third through sixth, respectively.
The 2000 season is the 24th for Bronco skipper Fred Decker, the winningest coach in school history. Decker owns a 671-572-6 career record entering the new campaign. Also the winningest coach in MAC history, Decker's teams are 341-254-1 in conference games. The Broncos have had 18 winning seasons in 23 years under Decker's direction. Scott Demetral (WMU '95) and Ken Jones (WMU '95) return for their third and second seasons, respectively, on Decker's coaching staff.
The Broncos finished the 1999 season with 30-28 overall and 20-12 MAC records. Western Michigan placed third in the MAC West. WMU lost 6-1 to Bowling Green and fell 7-5 to Kent in the 1999 MAC Tournament in Muncie, Ind.
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