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College baseball recruiting emphasis likely to shift

by John Helsley Published: May 4, 2011

Chicks dig the long ball, they say.

Coaches do, too.

But coaches dig winning even more. And with NCAA bat legislation putting a crimp in the power supply, recruiting trends are bound to put a new face – and build – on the prospect watch.

In what is shaping up as the Dead Bat Era, college teams are already placing more of an emphasis on speed and defense and pitching.

“Team speed is becoming more and more important,” said Oklahoma coach Sunny Golloway. “And you're going to see that continue, if the bats stay this way.

“The speed guys in high school, they're smiling. They've become more of an impact than that guy who can drive it out of the yard.”

Here in Oklahoma, where whipping south winds have traditionally put a premium on power, the change could be staggering.

Yet necessary.

“You may have recruited to another type of bat, and now this changes your philosophy,” Oklahoma State coach Frank Anderson said. “Everyone's going to try to run better.

“We can't hardly steal a base. But you've got to be able to run a little better, and you've got to be able to play defense at a pretty high level. Pitching and defense is always huge, but I think it'll be even more so now.”

by John Helsley
OSU Reporter Sr.
John Helsley grew up in Del City, reading all the newspapers and sports magazines he could get his hands on. And Saturday afternoons, when the Major League Game of the Week was on, he'd keep a scorecard for the game. So the sports appeal was was...
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