Chad Zurcher Named C-USA Player of the Year
May 24, 2011
PEARL, Miss. - Junior infielder Chad Zurcher headlines three University of Memphis baseball players that earned Conference USA postseason awards, as announced by the league office on Tuesday.
Zurcher is the first Tiger baseball player in program history to be named the Player of the Year in C-USA and the first conference Player of the Year recognition since Mark Little won the Great Midwest Conference's top honor in 1994. Zurcher is ninth player in program history to earn first team all-conference accolades and first player since Joey Lieberman in the 2007 season.
The Knoxville, Tenn., native has continued to lead the nation with a .455 batting average, eight points better than the C-USA single-season record of .447, set by UCF's Chris Duffy last season. Zurcher has a NCAA-best .560 on-base percentage after drawing 33 walks and being hit by a pitch 16 times. He has recorded two or more hits in a game 28 times and has produced three-or-more hits on 11 occasions. He has 18 doubles, 45 runs scored, 33 RBI and 12 steals.
Joining Zurcher on the C-USA postseason awards, junior's T.J. Rich and Drew Martinez garnered second team all-conference honors. Martinez was a second team selection last season and has helped the U of M to a league best .305 batting average from his leadoff spot in the lineup. Martinez leads the club with 53 runs scored and 20 steals while he is third on the team with a .321 batting average.
Rich led the Tigers with 52 RBI on the season and became the 11th player since 1974 to record 50 or more RBI in a single-season for the U of M. The Marietta, Ga., native finished with six home runs in the regular season and walked a team-high 38 times.
Memphis collects two or more players on the C-USA All-Conference teams for the seventh time in 15 seasons. The three players selected to all-conference gives Memphis 13 players to earn the accolades since head coach Daron Schoenrock began his tenure in 2005.
Voting for all-conference and specialty awards was done by a panel consisting of each head coach, each team's sports information director and a media representative from each city.
The Tigers open play at the 2011 Conference USA Baseball Championship presented by Trustmark on Wednesday against UCF. First pitch is slated for 9 a.m.
PLAYER OF THE YEAR
PITCHER OF THE YEAR
FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR
NEWCOMER OF THE YEAR
KEITH LeCLAIR COACH OF THE YEAR
FIRST TEAM ALL-CONFERENCE
SECOND TEAM ALL-CONFERENCE