John Baines has completed his sixth season as the head men's basketball coach at Elmhurst College. In 2014-15, the team posted a 20-8 overall record (9-5 in the CCIW) and qualified for the NCAA Tournament for the first time since the 2009 season. Baines’ team was nationally ranked and scored a thrilling triple-overtime win over fifth-ranked St. Norbert College in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament. The team reached the 20-win plateau for just the fourth time in school history and Baines was named the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association “Division III Coach of the Year. “
In 2015-16, Baines guided the Bluejays to back-to-back 20-win seasons for the first time in school history. The team finished the year with a 22-7 overall record, matching a school record for single-season victories. The team also advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the second consecutive season, another program first.
Baines spent three seasons as the head coach at the University of St. Francis before returning to take over the Bluejays. In his debut season at St. Francis in 2010-11, Baines guided the Saints to a 21-10 overall record, an improvement of 13 games from the previous season and the team's best record in 21 seasons. His team climbed to as high as 24th in the NAIA Division I coaches poll. At his time of departure, Baines left St. Francis with the highest coaching winning percentage in school history.
Baines began his collegiate coaching career at Elmhurst in 2000-01. In his first year with the Bluejays, he helped the squad to a school-best 22-5 record and its first CCIW Championship. The team advanced to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament and was ranked as high as sixth in the nation. In Baines' tenure as an assistant at Elmhurst the Bluejays compiled a 160-99 record (.618 winning percentage) and were ranked in the D3hoops.com top-10 for three consecutive years from 2007-2009.
Baines played college basketball at Illinois Wesleyan University. He was a part of teams that compiled a 103-14 record, played in the NCAA Tournament four times, reached the Final Four twice and won a national championship in 1997. Baines earned his bachelor's degree in mathematics from Illinois Wesleyan in 1998. He received a master's degree in sports administration from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2003. He and his wife, Emily, reside in Addison with their daughter, Sloane, and son, Jackson.