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BIG TEN BASEBALL WEEKLY

May 6, 2014
INDIANA SPORTS PAGE



Big Ten Medal of Honor 100th Anniversary Spotlight: Michigan's Casey Close

A 1986 Big Ten Medal of Honor recipient, Close garnered Big Ten Player of the Year
accolades as a senior, capping a career that saw him guide the Wolverines to three
Big Ten Championships. During his final season in Ann Arbor, he earned National
Player of the Year honors by Baseball America, hitting .440 with 19 home runs and a
single-season program record 72 RBI. That year, he was a first-team All-American and
Academic All-American. A four year letterwinner with the Wolverines, Close was a
three-time All-Big Ten standout and twice garnered Academic All-Big Ten honors.


Indiana holds a three-game lead over second-place Nebraska and Illinois heading into
the weekend, and aims to clinch at least a share of the Big Ten Championship. The
Hoosiers can clinch a share as early as Saturday with two victories, a Michigan
State win over Nebraska on Saturday and an Iowa victory over the Illini on either
Friday or Saturday.

Illinois' Casey Fletcher had a big week at the plate last week for the Illinois. The
junior belted five home runs, with three coming last Wednesday against Southern
Illinois and two against Michigan State on Saturday, with 10 RBI over a four-game
stretch. Not only did Fletcher earn Big Ten Player of the Week honors, he was
recognized as a National Player of the Week by Collegiate Baseball Newspaper and
NCAA.com.

Three Big Ten teams are ranked or receiving votes in the latest national polls,
released by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association, Collegiate
Baseball Newspaper and Baseball America on Monday. Indiana and Nebraska are each
among the top 30 in the latest NCBWA poll, with Indiana appearing at No. 19 and
Nebraska moving into the rankings at No. 29, while Illinois is also receiving votes.
The Hoosiers moved into the top 10 in the other two rankings, appearing at No. 8 in
the Collegiate Baseball Newspaper poll and No. 9 in the Baseball America standings.

Sixteen games featuring Big Ten teams will be nationally distributed this week, with
BTN carrying Saturday's Illinois at Iowa contest, televising a doubleheader on
Sunday featuring Ohio State at Michigan and Nebraska at Michigan State and featuring
Monday's finale between the Huskers and Spartans.

READ MORE: B1G Baseball Release 506.pdf 


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