College Sports Madness
Senior Brian Blasik was named the preseason Atlantic 10 Field Player of the Year by College Sports Madness.
DAYTON, Ohio –
Senior infielder Brian Blasik leads a group of five University of Dayton baseball players listed on the College Sports Madness
Preseason Atlantic 10 All-Conference teams. Blasik was named the preseason Field Player of the Year by the startup website publication.
Joining Blasik on the preseason all-conference first team is starting pitcher Burny Mitchem, infielder C.J. Gillman and centerfielder Bobby Glover. Outfielder Mike Coughlin was named second-team all-conference.
“Our motto going into the season is ‘expect to win’ – that means every day,” Head Coach Tony Vittorio said. “We are really excited about this year’s team because of the experience coming back.”
With a 32-27 overall record and 15-9 conference record last season, the Flyers finished third in A-10 regular season and will return five position players and two-of-three weekend starting pitchers for 2012.
Blasik became the first Dayton player to ever earn back-to-back A-10 First Team All-Conference honors last season. The Germantown, Ohio native hit .369 while setting a program-record 23 stolen bases. Despite missing the first 15 games of 2011 due to injury, Blasik was UD’s leader in homeruns (6) and had the team’s second-most hits (72) and runs scored (44). He recorded a hit in 38 of his 44 games played and began season on an 11-game hitting streak.
“Brian will go down as one of the best players to play at the University of Dayton,” Vittorio said. “Coming off two first-team all-conference seasons, I’m most proud that Brian developed himself into a really good shortstop – obviously we know he can hit with some of the best players in the country.”
Mitchem was named first-team all-conference last season as a starting pitcher after finishing with the second-best ERA in the A-10 at 2.07 – only behind consensus preseason all-American Andrew Smith of Charlotte. The fifth-year senior will be aiming at a handful of Dayton career records this season, including the strikeout record – needing nine to pass former teammate Cameron Hobson’s mark of 256.
Gillman was named second-team all-conference last season after posting some of the best numbers in the A-10. The Columbine, Colo., native set Dayton’s single season record for at-bats (241), hits (91) and registered the second-most steals in program history with 22. Gillman also led the team with a .378 batting average and 22 doubles.
As one of the best defensive centerfielders in the league, Glover was an all-conference honorable mention last season. The Fort Wayne, Ind., native recorded just two errors all season and had the second-most RBI for Dayton (37). Glover hit .367 during conference play and featured three games with four RBI.
Coughlin is another returning senior listed on the preseason team with solid numbers from last season – hitting .311 with 11 doubles and 26 RBI while starting in the outfield.
The Flyers begin the season on Feb. 17 against Ball State in Spartanburg, S.C. Dayton’s home opener will be in the fifth week of the season, hosting Toledo at Athletes in Action Stadium (Xenia, Ohio) on March 14 and later hosting Oakland at Woerner Field at Time Warner Cable Stadium on March 16.
Founded in 2011, College Sports Madness is an independent college sports website providing previews, predictions, insight and analysis.