The 2008 Southwest Diamond Classic will take place in Frisco TX from Thursday-Saturday. The University of Alabama, UT-Arlington, Dallas Baptist, and Nevada will take part in the four team tournament which will be hosted at the home of the Frisco Roughriders. Continue reading 2008 Southwest Diamond Classic
FROM CONFERENCE PRESS RELEASE
The Vanderbilt Commodores are predicted to repeat as the 2008 Southeastern Conference baseball champions, as voted by the league’s 12 baseball coaches in the 17th annual preseason SEC poll.
The Commodores, ranked as high as No. 3 nationally in the preseason polls, seek to capture their fifth SEC Championship, having also won titles in 1973, 1974, 1980 and 2007. Vanderbilt returns eight position starters and four pitchers from their 2007 squad which also won the SEC Tournament and earned the National No. 1 Seed in the NCAA Tournament. Continue reading SEC picks Vandy as Preseason Favorite
The University of Alabama announced its 2008 baseball schedule today, which features 33 games in the state of Alabama and 20 games against teams that played in the 2007 NCAA Regionals, Super Regionals and College World Series.
The recent changes to the college baseball schedules have forced teams to play more games in a shorter period of time, creating five-game weeks for most teams throughout the country. Alabama is no different and the complexity of the schedule will have the Tide playing 26 road games this season, the most under head coach Jim Wells and the most by UA since playing 26 road games during the 1994 season.
“It was a very challenging schedule to put together due to the change in the format of the season,” Alabama head coach Jim Wells said. “First of all, we play in the toughest league in the country, then on top of that to have to play two midweek games makes it even more difficult.
“The NCAA’s uniform start date for all teams is Feb. 22, so we lost two weekends of baseball that we used to have,” Wells added. “I think we have a good schedule and we are playing some really good teams. We are on the road quite a bit this year, but most of the road games are in the state of Alabama against some really good in-state teams. We are excited to be going to Florence, Birmingham, Montgomery, Mobile and Jacksonville to showcase the Crimson Tide baseball program. I think that is a good thing.”
The Crimson Tide will play 30 home games this season, including 15 non-conference games and 15 SEC games.
The non-conference home schedule includes series with Cal Poly (Feb. 22-24), Youngstown State (March 7-9) and New Orleans (March 18-19). The Crimson Tide will also play single games against Troy (March 5), Samford (March 12), Jacksonville State (March 25), UAB (April 1), Mississippi Valley State (April 8), SE Louisiana (April 9) and Lipscomb (April 22).
Alabama’s 2008 SEC home schedule features defending SEC Champion Vanderbilt (March 21-23), Ole Miss (March 28-30), Mississippi State (April 18-20), Auburn (April 25-27) and Florida (May 9-11).
FROM NCBWA RELEASE
DALLAS – Barry Allen, Assistant Director for Media Relations at the University of Alabama, is the winner of the 33rd annual Wilbur Snypp Award, presented annually by the NCBWA for outstanding contributions to college baseball.
Allen begins his 24th year in the University of Alabama Athletics Media Relations Office and his 19th year as a full-time Assistant Director of Media Relations. Allen is responsible for the overall publicity plan for one of the SEC’s most successful baseball programs. He oversees the day-to-day media operations for the nationally-ranked Crimson Tide baseball program and is responsible for producing the Alabama Baseball Media Guide, game notes, updating statistics and updating the school’s website. Allen also coordinates all interviews requests for head baseball coach Jim Wells, the Crimson Tide’s assistant coaches and the student-athletes.
“Barry Allen is the heart and soul of college baseball,” said NCBWA executive director Bo Carter. “There is no harder worker in the business, and his knowledge and love of the game can be seen at every level.”
He has worked closely with the UA baseball program since the 1987 season, where he has worked more than 1,000 games. Allen has been associated with three College World Series teams (1996, 1997 and 1999), two SEC Championships (1996 and 2006) and six SEC Tournament Championships (1995, 1996, 1997, 1999, 2002 and 2003) during his baseball tenure. He has also worked 16 SEC Tournaments and 12 NCAA Regionals and served as the NCAA Regional Media Coordinator for the 1996 NCAA South II Regional, the 1997 NCAA South Regional, the 1999 NCAA Tuscaloosa Regional and Super Regional, the 2002 NCAA Tuscaloosa Regional and 2006 NCAA Tuscaloosa Regional and Super Regional.
“Barry is most deserving of this award, said NCBWA Associate Executive Director Russell Anderson. “He does an outstanding job of promoting not only Alabama Baseball, but the entire sport of college baseball.”
In 2006, Allen teamed with Greg Seitz, the Media Relations Director at Jacksonville (Ala.) State University, to form the inaugural Alabama Baseball Media Day, sponsored by the Alabama Sportswriters Association. Allen and Seitz coordinated with all 17 Division I and Division II schools in the state of Alabama for a statewide baseball media day held at Regions Park in Hoover, Ala., site of the annual SEC Baseball Tournament. The head coach and two players from all 18 schools attended the one-day event, which also featured lunch and a keynote speaker for the highly successful event.
Allen has been associated with the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) since the 1998-99 school year, where he has served as Second Vice President (1999), First Vice President (2000) and President (2001). He currently serves on the NCBWA Board of Directors and works closely with the organization’s preseason and post-season All-America teams as well as the Dick Howser Trophy, presented to the collegiate baseball player of the year.
“This is a great honor. I have a deep passion for college baseball and have developed some real friendships over the past 20 years in covering this great sport,” Allen said. “The opportunity to work with many great coaches and student-athletes and to get to know each of them and their families has been very rewarding. It has also be an honor to be associated with the NCBWA and the great work this organization does to promote out national pastime. We have a great leadership in the NCBWA and a strong membership, too. I’d like thank everyone involved for allowing me to play a small role in this organization and to once again say how grateful I am to be recognized in this way.”
Allen attended the University of Alabama, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in Telecommunication and Film in 1989. As a student, he worked in the school’s Media Relations Office, where he worked with the UA baseball team and track and field teams. He also worked a public address announcer for the Alabama women’s basketball and gymnastics and served as the official scorekeeper and public address announcer for the state high school basketball tournament, played annually at Memorial/Coleman Coliseum in Tuscaloosa. He also worked part-time at WNPT Radio in Tuscaloosa, where he hosted a high school football pregame and post-game scoreboard show and worked as play-by-play announcer for various American Legion baseball teams.
A native of Anniston, Ala., Allen attended Saks High School, where he served as head football manager and head baseball manager during his career. He was also the assistant sports editor for the school newspaper and yearbook.
Allen is also involved with several charitable organizations, including Children’s Hospital, United Cerebral Palsy and the American Cancer Society.
Allen is married to the former Carla McLendon and the couple has two daughters, Elle (April 18, 2001) and Annie (April 9, 2003). Allen is an avid baseball fan and sports memorabilia collector. His travels have taken him to more than 300 professional and collegiate baseball stadiums over the last two decades. Allen also collects baseball and football Hall of Fame autographs as well as Heisman Trophy winners.
The Alabama veteran follows a long line of illustrious persons in gaining the award, given in memory of longtime Ohio State Sports Information Director and NCBWA founder, the late Wilbur (Bill) Snypp, since 1975. Snypp was a noted contributor to the writers’ organization, which was initiated in 1962 (and celebrating its 46th year in 2007), as well as an officer in the group. The NCBWA/Wilbur Snypp Award annually honors a professional for contributions to the sport of collegiate baseball. Voting is done by a panel of previous winners, who include past NCAA World Series directors, College Sports Information Directors of America Hall of Fame members, decorated media members and others.
Previous Wilbur Snypp Award Winners
1975 Wilbur Snypp, Ohio State (D)
1976 Bill Esposito, St. John’s (D)
1977 Phil Langan, Cornell
1978 John Geis, Southern Conference
1979 Hank Schomber, Georgia Southern
1980 Bob Culp, Western Michigan (D)
1981 Lou Pavlovich Sr., Collegiate Baseball
1982 Tom Price, South Carolina
1983 Bob Bradley, Clemson (D)
1984 Robert Williams, Omaha World-Herald
1985 Jerry Miles, NCAA
1986 Larry Keefe, Seton Hall (D)
1987 Tom Rowen, San Jose Mercury-News (D)
1988 Fred Gerardi, KESY Radio, Omaha
1989 Jim Wright, NCAA
1990 Steve Weller, SIU-Edwardsville
1991 Bill Little, University of Texas
1992 Kirk Bohls, Austin American-Statesman
1993 Bo Carter, Southwest Conference
1994 Lou Pavlovich Jr., Collegiate Baseball
1995 Steve Pivovar, Omaha World-Herald
1996 Gary Johnson, NCAA
1997 Dave Wohlhueter, Cornell
1998 Allan Simpson, Baseball America
1999 Alan Cannon, Texas A&M University
2000 Jim Callis, Baseball America
2001 Dick Case, USA Baseball (D)
2002 Russell Anderson, Conference USA
2003 John Manuel, Baseball America
2004 Dana Heiss Grodin, Sports Weekly
2005 Dennis Poppe, NCAA
2006 Mike Montoro, Southern Miss
2007 Barry Allen, Alabama
(D) – Deceased
The Auburn Tigers have released their 2008 schedule which opens on Febraury 22nd when East Tennennsee State visits Auburn for a four game set. The Tigers will then face Florida State in a four game series starting on Feb. 28th and 29th before heading to Tallhassee to play two more games against the Seminoles. They will play a full SEC schedule which is highlighted by visits from South Carolina and Mississippi State. They will also have a two tough three game series at Vanderbilt on April 18th-20th and Alabama on April 25th-27th. The full schedule is available here.
Gaspard could resign his post as the head coach of Northwestern State University, where he has been since the 2002 season, as early as today.
Simultaneous announcements from Alabama and Northwestern State will come when the move is official, likely Wednesday.
Jim Wells has announced his retirement as the head coach of Alabama. He was at the school for 13 seasons and accumulated a 553-272 record. This announcement means that at least three SEC programs will have new head coaches next season. A full national search for a successor will begin immediately.
Alabama starter Casey Kebodeaux pitched eight innings while only letting up one run on five hits and was followed by Tommy Hunter who struck out two batters in a perfect ninth inning to get hsi fourth save of the year. Alabama grabbed the lead on a sacrifice bunt by Greg Paiml that brought home Ryan Rhoden with the eventual winning run. Alabama will return to action when they visit Vanderbilt while UAB heads to Houston.
Todd McInnis (seen above) pitched 7 2/3 innings of no hit ball as the Eagles beat the Crimson Tide 5-0. Alabama had entered the game with a team batting average of .344. McInnis is now 3-0 on the season as USM is now 11-2 and the Tide fell to 12-3. Definitely a pitcher worth keeping an eye on.