John Bassett

John Bassett

Head Softball Coach

Email John Bassett

Bassett joined the Snappers to begin the 2015-16 season and has steadily improved the program. In the 2023 season, Coach Bassett collected his 200th win at Spoon River.  In 2022, the Snappers earned their first conference championship since 1978. The team returns 8 starters for 2023/24 and has tremendous talent in the incoming freshmen class. In Bassett’s 16 year collegiate coaching career, he has accumulated 453 career wins and his teams have earned the following awards:

  • 64 All-Conference
  • 29 NJCAA and NFCA All-Region
  • 54 Academic All-Conference
  • 30 NJCAA Academic All-Americans
  • 8 NJCAA and NFCA All-Americans
  • 4 conference Player of the Year winners
  • 4 conference Pitcher of the Year winners
  • 4 conference Freshman of the Year winners
  • 4 Coach of the Year awards
  • 1 NFCA Rawlings Gold Glove Award winner

Bassett spent 2013-14 as the head coach at NCAA Division-I Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW) where he led the Mastodons to a 40-15 overall record, a 13-4 mark in conference play, and a runner-up finish at the 2014 Summit League Softball Championships. During his one year at IPFW, Bassett coached the Summit League Pitcher of the Year, five first team all-conference players, and six total all-conference selections. Bassett’s squad defeated a ranked opponent (#15 Texas) for the first time in school history, and also held a school record RPI ranking of 54 while receiving votes in the USA/NFCA national pools for several weeks.

As the head softball coach at Heartland, Bassett led the program to a 144-48 record during his tenure, helped the Hawks capture the Mid-West Athletic Conference title in each of his three seasons, and won two coach of the year awards in his time at HCC. He coached five All-Americans, including three first team All-American selections, 10 all-region players, including three straight Region 24 Players of the Year, and 20 all-conference selections, including three straight M-WAC Players of the Year, three straight M-WAC Freshmen of the Year, and two M-WAC Pitchers of the Year.

In his third year as the head man in 2013, Bassett was named the M-WAC Coach of the Year as Heartland went 48-12 overall, tied a program best with only one loss in conference action (21-1), and went on to wins its fifth overall and third straight M-WAC championship. In 2012, the Hawks won a program-best 57 games (57-15), went 24-4 in the conference, and captured the program’s fourth overall and Bassett’s second straight M-WAC championship. In his inaugural season in 2011, Bassett was honored as the Region 24 Coach of the Year after leading the Hawks to a 39-21 record overall, a 24-2 M-WAC mark, and their fourth straight Region 24 championship.

Prior to his time at Heartland, Bassett spent three years at Tabor College in Kansas, where he helped turn a program that was 1-20 prior to his arrival to a 16-25 team in his last year, while recruiting the entire squad for a 27-24 season a year after.

Bassett graduated from Eureka College in Eureka, Illinois with a degree business administration. He is married to the former Kristine Birdwell, and the pair have five children: Nick, J.T., Hailey, Emma, and Lauren.

Associate Head Coach Steve Leverton

Assistant Coach Bill Towery