FROM CBD NEWS SOURCE
MORGANTOWN, W. Va. – The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association has released the list of semifinalists for the 2014 Dick Howser Trophy, presented by Easton Foundations. The award, given to the top player in collegiate baseball, is based on two rounds of national voting.
This is the 28th year of the Dick Howser Trophy presented by Easton Foundations. The finalists will be announced on Thursday, June 5. The 2014 award will be presented at TD Ameritrade Stadium in downtown Omaha, the home of the College World Series for the fourth year. The winner will be unveiled on Saturday, June 14 at 10 a.m. CT, the opening day of the 2014 CWS.
The candidates hail from 17 different conferences and 28 different schools. The Southeastern Conference leads the way with six semifinalists, followed by the Big West with five, Atlantic Coast, Ohio Valley and Pac-12 with three and Missouri Valley, Sun Belt and West Coast Conferences with two. Every position on the diamond is represented, including 10 starting pitchers, five second basemen, four outfielders, three catchers, three relief pitchers, three utility players, two third basemen, three shortstops and two designated hitters, among this diversified group.
The Dick Howser Trophy, given in memory of the former Florida State University All-America shortstop and major league player and manager, who died of brain cancer in 1987, is regarded by many as college baseball’s most prestigious award. Criteria for consideration of the trophy include performance on the field, leadership, moral character and courage, qualities that were exemplified by Dick Howser’s life.
A Florida native, Howser was twice an All-America shortstop at Florida State (1957-58), then coached the Seminoles in 1979, after a career as a major league player and coach. After one year in the college ranks, Howser returned to the majors to manage the New York Yankees and Kansas City Royals and won the World Series with the Royals in 1985. The baseball stadium on the Florida State campus is named for Howser.
“The Dick Howser Trophy was founded shortly after his death by a few friends of Dick’s in the St. Petersburg Area who played, coached and worked with him,” said David Feaster of the Howser Trophy Committee. “All knew him personally and were aware of him as a tremendous player, coach and friend. The award was initially awarded at the Governors Baseball Dinner held each spring in St. Petersburg to welcome Spring Training to Fla. and as time progressed, we moved the presentation to Omaha, the center of college baseball, during the World Series. I have been involved with the award for over 20 years and have loved every minute of my involvement. I have had the opportunity to meet some great college players as well as some great young men. I am so proud of the Character quality we have in our award, which makes it unique. I am also proud of our selection process by the NCBWA which is the most democratic of any award and provides a true national scope.
“The Dick Howser trophy is now 28 years old and growing stronger,” added Feaster. “It is a true testimony to Dick Howser’s ability as a player, coach and gentlemen. I am proud to be associated with it.”
The winner’s name is inscribed on the permanent trophy, a bronze bust of Howser displayed at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg – home of the Tampa Bay Rays. Both the winner and his school receive a special trophy to keep.
NCBWA membership includes writers, broadcasters and publicists. Designed to promote and publicize college baseball, it is the sport’s only college media-related organization, founded in 1962.
The Howser Trophy was created in 1987, shortly after Howser’s death. Previous winners of the Howser Trophy are Mike Fiore, Miami, 1987; Robin Ventura, Oklahoma State, 1988; Scott Bryant, Texas, 1989; Alex Fernandez, Miami-Dade Community College South, 1990; Frank Rodriguez, Howard College (Texas), 1991; Brooks Kieschnick, Texas, 1992 and 1993; Jason Varitek, Georgia Tech, 1994; Todd Helton, Tennessee, 1995; Kris Benson, Clemson, 1996; J. D. Drew, Florida State, 1997; Eddy Furniss, LSU, 1998; Jason Jennings, Baylor, 1999; Mark Teixeira, Georgia Tech, 2000; Mark Prior, P, USC, 2001, Khalil Greene, SS, Clemson, 2002; Rickey Weeks, 2B, Southern U., 2003; Jered Weaver, P, Long Beach State, 2004; Alex Gordon, 3B, Nebraska, 2005; Brad Lincoln, P/DH, Houston, 2006; David Price, P, Vanderbilt, 2007; Buster Posey, C, Florida State, 2008; Stephen Strasburg, P, San Diego State, 2009; Anthony Rendon, 3B, Rice, 2010; Taylor Jungmann, P, Texas, 2011; Mike Zunino, C, Florida, 2012 and Kris Bryant, 3B, San Diego, 2013.
2014 DICK HOWSER TROPHY SEMIFINALISTS
Pos. Name, School
Caleb Adams, OF, Louisiana-Lafayette
Will Allen, C, Ole Miss
Austin Anderson, 3B, Ole Miss
Casey Bloomquist, SP, Cal Poly
Dylan Bosheers, SS, Tennessee Tech
Aaron Brown, UTL, Pepperdine
Walker Buehler, SP, Vanderbilt
Michael Cederoth, RP, San Diego State
Michael Conforto, OF, Oregon State
Jace Conrad, 2B, Louisiana-Lafayette
Andrew Daniel, 2B, San Diego
Ty Davis, SP, Washington
Paul DeJong, 2B, Illinois State
Brandon Finnegan, SP, TCU
Blake Fox, SP, Rice
Derek Gibson, DH, Southeast Missouri State
Casey Gillaspie, 1B, Wichita State
Mackenzie Handel, DH, Stephen F. Austin
Matt Imhoff, SP, Cal Poly
Michael Katz, OF, William & Mary
Nathan Kirby, SP, Virginia
Mark Mathias, 2B, Cal Poly
Daniel Miles, SS, Tennessee Tech
Sam Moore, RP, UC Irvine
Andrew Morales, SP, UC Irvine
Aaron Nola, SP, LSU
Max Pentecost, C, Kennesaw State
A.J. Reed, UTL, Kentucky
Michael Russell, SS, North Carolina
Joe Seddon, RP, South Carolina
Kyle Schwarber, C, Indiana
Ryan Seiz, 2B, Liberty
D.J. Stewart, OF, Florida State
Cole Sturgeon, UTL, Louisville
Ben Wetzler, SP, Oregon State