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MJC new baseball coach waits on deck
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The Modesto Junior College Department of Athletics has selected Zeb Brayton as the new head coach for men’s baseball but has not yet been made official by the board members until after the weekend concludes.

“It’s almost a certain thing but it is pending approval and waiting for the board to finalize everything and make it official in a couple days,” said Nick Stavrianoudakis, MJC interim director of athletics.

Brayton takes over for Paul “Bo” Aiello, who has decided to return to the classroom as a professor.

Brayton served as assistant coach for the MJC baseball team and as a part time physical education and health instructor for the college since 2004.

"Zeb is a high character individual who has been preparing himself for the last 10 years to become a head coach,” said Aiello in a press release. “He will do a good job of carrying on the great tradition that MJC has accomplished in the last 35 years."

As MJC’s assistant coach, Brayton was responsible for recruiting players from high schools; facilitating team meetings and the development of common goals, and coordinating communications between students, parents and instructors.

He also created a study hall for all student athletes associated with MJC baseball to encourage their academic performance.

Brayton developed and implemented a plan to upgrade MJC’s baseball facilities, and created the Pirates Dugout Club, which helped fundraise over $40,000 for the Pirate baseball program during the last two years.

“Zeb sees the big picture,” said Stavrianoudakis. “He has a proven ability to connect with student-athletes as students and as members of society. His care, commitment and passion for teaching and coaching are very evident. Zeb’s recruiting philosophy is to start in our backyard and build the program through our community.”

Brayton graduated from St. Mary’s High School in Stockton in 1996 and received a scholarship to play baseball at San Jose State University. He later transferred to San Joaquin Delta College, where he earned another scholarship to play at California State University, Stanislaus.

Brayton holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in physical education, with supplemental authorization in health education, from Stanislaus.  He received a Master of Science degree in teaching with a specialization in teaching and learning, from National University.

As of today MJC athletics is awaiting the official confirmation that should be made either by the end of the weekend or Monday.