Hello American Athletic Conference, We Are Memphis:
On July 1, the University of Memphis officially became a member of the American Athletic Conference. Beginning July 8, GoTigersGo.com brings a daily introduction of each sport at the University of Memphis to the American Athletic Conference. The sport schedule is below with links to previously featured programs.
Mark Bowlan tossed a perfect game on May 3, 1987 against Louisville at Nat Buring Stadium. At the time, it was only the sixth nine-inning perfect game in NCAA history, and there have been three since. In just 84 pitches, Bowlan retired 14-of-27 batters via groundouts, while needing just one strikeout on the perfect afternoon.
A modern day version of the box score from Mark Bowlan's perfect game against Louisville.
NCAA Batting Title
In 2011, Chad Zurcher led the NCAA with a .443 batting average. Zurcher also led the nation with a .547 on-base percentage. Zurcher had two or more hits in 29 games and three-plus hits on 11 occasions.
Chad Zurcher had 19 doubles, 47 runs scored, 34 RBI and 12 stolen bases in his 2011 campaign.
Conference Players of the Year
Mark Little earned the Great Midwest Conference Player of the Year accolade in 1994, and the last three seasons, the Tigers claimed a Conference USA piece of hardware. In 2011, Zurcher was named C-USA Player of the Year, and the following season, Jacob Wilson earned the honor. In 2013, Erik Schoenrock was voted the league's Pitcher of the Year.
Jacob Wilson hit .320 with 17 home runs and 64 RBI in 2012.
NCAA Tournament Apperances
The Tigers have advanced to the NCAA Tournament five times in the program's history, with the last appearance coming in the 2007 season. Then-Memphis State was one win away from a trip to the College World Series in 1978, but North Carolina rallied past the Tigers to advance. Memphis' five NCAA appearances came in 2007, 1994, 1981, 1978 and 1976.
The 2007 squad was the last to go to the NCAA Tournament.
Memphis baseball has eight All-Americans in its history. Jacob Wilson was the Tigers' most-recent All-American in 2012, following Chad Zurcher's 2011 selection that ended a 10-year stretch without an All-American pick. Dan Uggla (2001), Mark Little (1994), Tim Dulin (1983, 1984), Tim Corder (1982, 1983), Dave Anderson (1981) and Ron McNeely (1975, 1976) also are Tigers baseball All-Americans.
Dan Uggla was an All-American selection in 2001.
"Most Durable" Batboy Stan Bronson Jr.
Recognized by the Guinness Books of World Records, Stan Bronson Jr. completed his 55th season as the batboy for Tigers baseball in 2013. Bronson, 84, has been the honorary batboy since the 1958 season, taking in nearly 2,500 Tigers games.
After the Tigers bat in the seventh inning, Stan Bronson stands on home plate and tips his hat to the crowd.
Wins at FedExPark Since 2010 Opening
For the last four seasons, the Tigers have called FedExPark home. In that time, Memphis has 74 victories in the facility that was remodeled in time for the 2010 campaign. Thanks to a $3 million gift from FedEx Corp. (NYSE:FDX), construction redesigned the former Nat Buring Stadium that housed Memphis Tigers baseball since 1972.
FedExPark renovations included a new press box and suite added to the existing grandstand.
Time lapse of the grounds crew preparing FedExPark for a game against Tennessee in 2012.
Wins Since 2011
The Tigers posted 96 wins from 2011-13, including three-straight 30-win seasons. Prior to this recent run of success, the last time Memphis had three-straight 30-win campaigns was from 1993-95.
The infographic above shows where Memphis' 96 wins the last three seasons rank among American Athletic Conference foes.
Years of Tigers Baseball
The 2013 season completed year No. 100 for Memphis baseball. For the celebration, a 100-day countdown was featured on social media. An All-Century Team was also picked, featuring a 30-man roster.