McKenry Named Dick Howser Trophy Semifinalist

May 18, 2006 · MT Media Relations
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - Middle Tennessee junior catcher Michael McKenry was named a semifinalist for the Dick Howser Trophy on Thursday, given annually to the top player in collegiate baseball.

The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association, working in conjunction with the St. Petersburg Area Chamber of Commerce, has released the list of 16 semifinalists for the 2006 Dick Howser Trophy. The membership of the NCBWA will choose the Dick Howser Trophy based on three rounds of voting. The 2006 winner will be announced at the College World Series in Omaha on Friday, June 16, at 10 a.m. (CDT).

McKenry and Troy shortstop Tom King are the only Sun Belt Conference players on the list.

McKenry is currently batting .393 with 13 home runs and 60 RBIs in 48 games for the Blue Raiders heading into Thursday night's contest at Troy. He also leads the Blue Raiders in walks, on-base percentage and slugging percentage and has thrown out 42 percent of potential base stealers this season.

The Dick Howser Trophy is regarded by many as college baseball's most prestigious award. It is 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.

Criteria for consideration for 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 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 Devil Rays and the 1999 NCAA Men's Basketball Final Four - along with several other locations. Both the winner and his school receive a special trophy to keep.

The St. Petersburg Area Chamber of Commerce is in its 107th year of existence in 2006. The organization has long been a vital force in the baseball affairs of the city, both in spring training and during the pursuit of a major league baseball franchise for the Tampa Bay-St. Petersburg area and continues its solid role in the 21st Century.

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; and Alex Gordon, 3B, Nebraska, 2005.

Pos. Name, School
1B Andy D'Alessio, Clemson
3B Ronnie Bourquin, Ohio State
SP Eddie Degerman, Rice
OF Luke Gorsett, Nebraska
SS Tom King, Troy
OF Kellen Kulbacki, James Madison
SP Tim Lincecum, Washington
SP-DH/ATH Brad Lincoln, Houston
C Michael McKenry, Middle Tennessee
SP Andrew Miller, North Carolina
2B Jim Negrych, Pittsburgh
OF Shane Robinson, Florida State
SP Wes Roemer, Cal State Fullerton
1B Ryan Strieby, Kentucky
DH/ATH Damon Sublett, Wichita State
3B Zach Daeges, Creighton

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