Nine Catchers Added To Johnny Bench Award Watch List

April 13, 2010

WICHITA, KS – The Greater Wichita Area Sports Commission announced today that nine catchers have been added to the official watch list for the 2010 Coleman Company-Johnny Bench Award delivered by Papa John’s Pizza.

The nine additions to the list are Jimmy Jacquot (University of Cincinnati),  Jett Bandy (University of Arizona), Cole Leonida (Georgia Tech), Ryan Lipkin (University of San Francisco), Aaron Munoz (Northwestern State University), Derek Trent (East Tennessee State University), Adam Weisenburger (Miami (OH) University), Zane Williams (UNC Charlotte) and Zach Wright (East Carolina University).

Through 29 games, Jacquot is batting .294 with a team-leading five home runs and a team-best 24 RBI. The Swansea, Ill., native has also been an asset behind the plate throwing out 18 attempted base stealers in 39 attempts, which ranks amongst BIG EAST leaders.

The Coleman Company-Johnny Bench Award is an annual award that honors those athletes that serve as a team’s starting catcher in at least 75% of the games. Nominees that end up playing primarily another position, such as designated hitter, or those that split their time with another catcher in a 50/50 situation will be disqualified from semifinalist selection.

The watch list will be narrowed down to the semifinalists, whom will be announced May 19, 2010. Ballots will be sent to the national voting panel at the end of May for a vote to determine the three finalists. The finalists will be announced June 2, 2010 prior to the NCAA Regionals and Major League Baseball Draft. A final vote among the national committee will occur during the College World Series. All finalists will be brought to Wichita and the winner will be announced at the 13th Annual Greater Wichita Sports Banquet on July 1, 2010.

Johnny Bench was the National League Rookie of the Year in 1968 and was a two-time National League Most Valuable Player in 1970 and 1972. The 14-time All-Star was a 10-time Gold Glove Winner and a World Series Most Valuable Player in 1976. In 1980, he set an endurance record by catching 100+ games for 13 consecutive seasons. Bench was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in January 1989 with the fourth highest percentage of total votes cast.

Following are the original members of the 2010 Watch List

Jeff Arnold SR University of Louisville
Jared Avchen SR East Carolina University
Chris Berset SR University of Michigan
Alex Black JR Coppin State University
Ty Boyles SR Gardner-Webb University
Ross Brayton SR Cal Poly
Tyler Bullock SR Southern Illinois University Carbondale
Dan Burkhart JR Ohio State University
Tony Caldwell JR Auburn University
Chad Comer JR University of Texas at Arlington
Josh Cryer JR Southeastern Louisiana University
Kevin David JR Oklahoma State University
Aaron Dudley SR University of Toledo
Justin Echeverria SR Stony Brook University
Tyler Elkins SR Bowling Green State
Kyle Enders SR University of South Carolina
Erick Fernandez JR Georgetown University
Kevin Flynn JR Hofstra University
Blake Forsythe JR University of Tennessee
Dean Forthum SR Columbia University
Micah Gibbs JR Louisiana State University
Victor Gomez JR Marshall University
Travis Graves SR University of Southern Mississippi
Ben Heath JR Pennsylvania State University
Bryan Holaday SR Texas Christian University
Jose Iglesias SR Coastal Carolina University
Ed Jayjack SR University of North Carolina at Greensboro
Aaron Johnson SR University of Illinois
Jim Klocke SR Southeast Missouri State
Kyle Knudson SR University of Minnesota
Matt Koch SO Loyola Marymount University
Francis Larson SR UC Irvine
Rafael Lopez JR Florida State University
Myckie Lugbauer SR University of Maine
Kyle Mahoney JR High Point University
Jeremy Mayo JR Texas Tech University
James McCann SO University of Arkansas
Cameron McConnell JR University of Notre Dame
Mike Murray SR Wake Forest University
Rafael Neda JR University of New Mexico
John Nester JR Clemson University
Marcus Nidiffer SR University of Kentucky
Joe Oliveira SR University of the Pacific
Tyler Ogle SO University of Oklahoma
Dominic Piazza JR Cal State Northridge
Nick Rickles SO Stetson University
Cameron Rupp JR University of Texas
Joey Stevens SR Eastern Kentucky University
Beau Taylor SO University of Central Florida
John Turk SR University of Akron
Cody Stanley JR UNC Wilmington
Chris Wallace SR University of Houston

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