With less than a week away from opening day, the Belmont baseball team is feeling optimistic about the upcoming season.
Baseball players Joshua South, Kyle Brennan, Jackson Campbell, Logan Jarvis and Jack Capobianco all received recognition for their outstanding performances last season along with the team itself, which received the most votes, 14, in the preseason polls to finish first in the Ohio Valley Conference.
“We’re honored by that vote and recognition but the preseason polls aren’t the ones that really matter. It’s gonna be decided between the foul lines and that’s the beauty of the game,” said head coach Dave Jarvis Friday in a press conference.
Jarvis reiterates that despite Belmont’s first-place prediction in the conference polls, the ultimate proof will be when the team gets back on the field.
Joshua South and Kyle Brennan will be a must-watch this season as both pitchers were named to the OVC’s All-Conference preseason team.
South is the first player in Belmont’s history to receive the OVC’s preseason pitcher of the year award in two consecutive seasons.
With a 2.42 ERA, 26 strikeouts and a 2-0 record last season, South is a top 20 sophomore pitcher in NCAA Division I baseball.
With five, Brennan led all NCAA pitchers in wins last season and was also recognized by Perfect Game, who named the pitcher to the All-OVC team.
Both Jackson Campbell and Logan Jarvis received The Bobby Bragan Collegiate Slugger Award Watchlist, a list of 48 players, making Belmont one of nine schools in Division I to recognize multiple athletes on the list.
Campbell finished last season with a .339 batting average, 19 RBI’s and 6 home runs all in 17 games.
With Campbell’s six long shots, the junior catcher ranked in the top 20 in NCAA Statistical Categories in home runs.
Logan Jarvis’ eight doubles last season also landed him a spot in a top 20 category.
Another player who ranked in the top 20 in NCAA Statistical Categories was sophomore Jack Capobianco who was third last season in sacrifice bunts.
Other players recognized by Collegiate Baseball Newspaper were sophomore John Behrends and freshman Tommy Crider who made the Top Players to Watch in the OVC list by CB Newspaper.
Freshman Will Jenkins and Guy Lipscomb achieved D1Baseball’s Impactful Freshman in the OVC list.
With phenomenal statistics and an eight-game winning streak to close out its season last year, it is no wonder why Belmont is projected to win the conference.
“To get between the lines and have the opportunity to play the game again, that’s what we are excited about,” said Jarvis.
The Bruins play their opening series against Illinois State on Saturday and Sunday in a series of doubleheaders at E.S. Rose Park with the opening pitch scheduled for 1 p.m.
This article written by A.J. Wuest.