Emeel Salem Senior Finalist

Alabama senior center fielder Emeel Salem has been named one of 30 candidates for the inaugural Lowe's Senior CLASS Baseball Award, presented to a senior player who excels both on and off the field. CLASS -- Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School -- honors the attributes of college student-athletes who stay in school and pursue the many rewards that a senior season can bring.

Alabama baseball star Emeel Salem maintains a 3.85 grade point average with a double-major in Marketing and Spanish at The Capstone. He was recently named the 2007 H. Boyd McWhorter SEC Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year, the highest academic honor presented by the Southeastern Conference.

Last year, Salem was the 2006 SEC Baseball Scholar-Athlete of the Year and was named to ESPN the Magazine's CoSIDA Academic All-America team. Salem, who had logged more than 100 hours of community service in the Crimson Tide's Life Skills program, was also named to the 2006 SEC Baseball Good Works Team.

A 2006 First-Team All-America by the College Baseball Foundation, Salem leads Alabama with a .366 average this season with five home runs and 24 RBI. He also leads the Tide with 47 runs scored and 21 stolen bases.

Salem is also a 2007 candidate for the Dick Howser Trophy (National Collegiate Baseball Writer's Association Player of the Year), Golden Spikes Award (USA Baseball Player of the Year) and the Brooks Wallace Award (College Baseball Foundation Player of the Year).

Candidates are selected based on personal qualities that define a complete student athlete. While the on-the-field performance is a factor in determining candidates and the eventual winner, personal character and off-the-field achievements in the classroom and community are major areas of focus.

"We are excited to add college baseball to the growing list of NCAA sports of the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award," said Bob Gfeller, Lowe's senior vice president of Marketing and Advertising. "With the landscape of baseball over the years, these collegiate seniors deserve to be honored for staying in school, being a leader on their team, working towards their degree and making an impact in the local community. These 30 baseball candidates are tremendous collegiate student athletes in every sense of the word."

A national media committee will select 10 finalists for the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award in May. Those ten names will then be placed on the official ballot for a nationwide vote beginning May 9 and concluding June 6. Fan balloting will be coupled with votes from coaches, media and sponsors to determine the recipient of the award.

The award winner and the college baseball All-Senior All-America Team will be announced this June during the 2007 NCAA College World Series in Omaha, Nebraska.

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