Brown & Cormier finalists for Howser Trophy

TUSCALOOSA, Ala.- The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association, working in Association with the St. Petersburg Area Chamber of Commerce, has released the list of 40 semifinalists for the Dick Howser Trophy, given to the top player in collegiate baseball.

The membership of the NCBWA will choose the Dick Howser Trophy based on three rounds of voting. The 2002 winner will announced at the College World Series in Omaha on Friday, June 14 at 9:30 a.m. CDT.

A total of 17 different conferences have at least one player among the semifinalists. The ACC has the most semifinalists with 10, followed by the SEC (6) and Pac-10 (5).

Cormier, a senior from Lafayette, La., is 8-2 with a 2.83 ERA in 13 starts this season for the Crimson Tide. He also had added five complete games. The senior has worked 101.2 innings and allowed 32 earned runs and 105 hits. Cormier has also added 69 strikeouts and 17 walks.

Lance Cormier

Brown, a senior from Hueytown, is the Crimson Tide's third-leading hitter with a .333 (54-for-162) batting avergae in 49 games. The senior has added 10 home run and 51 RBI. Brown also leads the team and ranks second in the SEC with 46 walks.

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

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 University (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 permanently displayed at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, home of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays and the 1999 NCAA Men's Basketball Final Four. Both the winner and his school receive a special trophy to keep.

The St. Petersburg Area Chamber of Commerce is in its 103rd year of existence in 2002. 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 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; and Mark Prior, P, USC, 2001.

2002 Dick Howser Trophy Semifinalists

SS Russ Adams, North Carolina
2B Eric Arnold, Rice
3B Jeff Baker, Clemson
SP Kyle Bakker, Georgia Tech
UT/ATH Ryan Barthelemy, Florida State
OF Adam Berry, UCLA
SP Ryan Bicandoa, Western Kentucky
C Jeremy Brown, Alabama
UT/ATH Whit Bryant, Elon
OF Matt Buckmiller, Columbia
SP Bryan Bullington, Ball State
RP Dave Bush, Wake Forest
C David Castillo, Oral Roberts
OF Vito Chiaravallotti, Richmond
OF Jason Cooper, Stanford
RP Chad Cordero, Cal State Fullerton
SP Lance Cormier, Alabama
UT/ATH Jesse Crain, Houston
1B Nat Gold, Gonzaga
SS Khalil Greene, Clemson
1B Conor Jackson, California
OF Mark Jurich, Louisville
2B James Jurries, Tulane
OF Ryan Kenning, New Mexico State
SS Mark Kiger, Florida
UT/ATH Chris Maples, North Carolina
UT/ATH John McCurdy, Maryland
SS Drew Meyer, South Carolina
SP Scooter Michael, UNC Greensboro
C Pat O'Brien, Kent State
2B Chris O'Riordan, Stanford
SS Yaron Peters, South Carolina
RP Royce Ring, San Diego State
SP Justin Simmons, Texas
SP Kyle Sleeth, Wake Forest
OF Steve Stanley, Notre Dame
SP Tim Stauffer, Richmond
SP Brad Sullivan, Houston
RP Blake Taylor, South Carolina
2B Rickie Weeks, Southern

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