Series OutlookGame 1: Louisiana Tech at Arkansas (DH)Friday, Feb. 24, 1:05 p.m. – Baum StadiumProbable Starting PitchersUA: 45 Charley Boyce, RHP (0-0, 5.40 ERA)LT: 29 Nathan Bounds, RHP (0-1, 2.25 ERA)
Game 2: Louisiana Tech at Arkansas (DH)Friday, Feb. 24, following game 1 – Baum StadiumProbable Starting PitchersUA: 33 Nick Schmidt, LHP (2-0, 0.00 ERA)LT: 39 Jericho Jones, RHP (0-1, 8.22 ERA)
Game 3: Louisiana Tech at Arkansas (Cox Sports Television)Saturday, Feb. 25, 1:05 p.m. – Baum StadiumProbable Starting PitchersUA: 34 Shaun Seibert, RHP (0-0, 0.00 ERA)LT: 47 Luke Burnett, RHP (0-1, 2.35 ERA)
Arkansas Opens Home Slate With Louisiana TechArkansas is 6-0 headed into the 2006 home opener at Baum Stadium on Friday afternoon against Louisiana Tech. The Razorbacks and Bulldogs will play a double header beginning at 1:05 p.m. on Friday with the second game starting 45 minutes after the conclusion of game one.Cox Sports will televise the series finale on Saturday at 1:05 p.m. Tim Grubbs will handle play-by-play duties with former Razorback hurler and all-time wins leader Scott Tabor handling color. The Razorback Baseball Radio Network will carry all three games with Chuck Barrett and Rick Schaeffer calling the action. A live web cast of Friday’s games and audio for all three games can also be accessed on the RazorZone at Hogwired.com. Live stats are also available to everyone on Hogwired.com.Louisiana Tech enters the game with a 3-4 record after losing two-of-three games to McNesse State and Texas-Arlington to open the season. They hammered Gambling State 21-1 in their most recent outing on Feb. 14. Tech is hitting .307 as a team and averaging 6.5 run per game with a pitching staff that boasts a 4.57 ERA and a .254 opponent batting average. Arkansas holds a 14-2 edge in the all-time series with Louisiana Tech. Arkansas skipper Dave Van Horn is 6-1 against the Bulldogs in his tenure with the Hogs. UA won two-of-three games at Louisiana Tech last season after sweeping the Bulldogs in Fayetteville in 2004. Ranked as high as ninth in the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association poll, the Hogs have swept two tournaments to open the season. UA is hitting .299 as a team and averaging eight runs per contest. The Hogs’ pitching staff has a 1.67 ERA to go along with a .189 opponent batting average. Fifth-year senior right-hander Charley Boyce (0-0) will start the first game on Friday. Boyce has a 5.40 ERA in two starts this season. Sophomore left-hander Nick Schmidt (2-0) is slated to start the second game of the double header on Friday. He has not allowed a base hit in 12 innings this season. Shaun Seibert is tentatively scheduled to start Saturday’s series finale at 1:05 p.m.
Arkansas in Home OpenersThe Razorbacks are 38-8 in home openers since 1960 and 33-3 under Norm DeBriyn and Dave Van Horn dating back to the 1970 season. Arkansas has won 11 consecutive home openers dating back to their last loss on Feb. 18, 1994, a 5-3 loss to the Kansas Jayhawks. Hogs’ skipper Dave Van Horn is 3-0 in season openers at Arkansas. The Razorbacks beat Minnesota, 5-4, in the 2005 home opener.
Scouting the BulldogsThe Bulldogs enter the weekend with a 3-4 record after having three games washed out last weekend against Louisiana-Lafayette due to bad weather. The Bulldogs lost two-of-three games to McNeese State and Texas-Arlington to open the season. They beat Grambling State 21-1 in their last outing on Feb. 14. Offensively, Louisiana Tech is hitting .307 as a team and scoring 6.6 runs per game. The Bulldogs are slugging .414 with a .401 on-base percentage and have swiped 8-of-15 bases as a team. Amos Ramon is the club’s leading hitter at .440 with a home run and four RBI. Ryan Hamilton is Tech’s leading run producer with five RBI. The pitching staff boasts a 4.57 ERA and a .254 opponent batting average. The Tech staff is issuing 5.6 walks per game while striking out seven per contest. Louisiana Tech will start three right-handers in the series. Junior Nathan Bounds will start the front-end of the double header. He is 0-1 this season with a 2.25 ERA in eight innings of work. Freshman Jericho Jones will start Friday’s second game. He is 1-0 in two starts over 7.2 innings of work. Jones has a 8.22 ERA with opponents hitting .321. Freshman Luke Burnett will take the hill in Saturday’s series finale. Burnett is 0-1 this season with a 2.35 ERA. Arkansas holds a 14-2 edge in the all-time series with Louisiana Tech. The Razorbacks are 8-0 in Fayetteville against the Bulldogs while UA skipper Dave Van Horn has a 6-1 mark vs. Louisiana Tech in his tenure at Arkansas. The Hogs won two-of-three games from Tech in Ruston last season.
A Look at the Razorbacks’ RotationGame 1: Friday – Charley Boyce, RHP (0-0, 5.40 ERA) – Boyce set the school record with his 47th career start on Saturday, Feb. 18, against Stephen F. Austin in the Al Ogletree Classic in Edinburg, Texas. Boyce pitched just one-plus inning in the shortest start of his career against the Lumberjacks. He allowed five runs – two earned – on two hits and three walks. The senior right-hander will be allowed to pitch much deeper into the game against Louisiana Tech on Friday. Boyce had a bone spur in his elbow shaved down in the offseason and has missed time in the spring with an infection. He will be on a limited pitch count on Friday. Game 2: Friday – Nick Schmidt, LHP (1-0, 0.00 ERA) – Schmidt was the Pro-Line Cap National Pitcher of the Week and SEC Pitcher of the week honors after starting and throwing six hitless innings against Oklahoma State on Feb. 11 in Mobile, Ala. Brian McLelland and Devin Collis finished off the 12th no-hitter in school history. Schmidt followed that with six-more scoreless innings against No. 18 TCU on Friday, Feb. 17, in Edinburg, Texas. He has not allowed a hit in 12 innings this season while striking out 13 and walking four. Saturday – Shaun Seibert, RHP (0-0, 0.00 ERA) – Seibert will be making his first start of the 2006 season on Saturday against the Bulldogs. He threw two innings in relief against Stephen F. Austin on Saturday, Feb. 19, allowing two unearned runs in two innings of work. Seibert struck out two and didn’t issue a walk. A year ago, he went 5-3 with a 3.60 ERA.
Cox Sports to Televise Saturday’s GameCox Sports Television will carry Saturday’s game with Louisiana Tech from Baum Stadium. It is one of five Arkansas games Cox Sports will televise this season. Saturday’s game is the only Arkansas home game Cox Sports Television will carry this season. Tim Grubbs will handle play-by-play duties with former Arkansas great Scott Tabor handling color. Cox will also televise the Razorbacks’ visit to Wichita State on March 28 and the Hogs’ trip to Tulsa to play ORU on May 2. The Friday, April 28 and Sunday, April 30, games at LSU will also be broadcast on Cox Sports Television.
Looking Back at the Al Ogletree Classic The Razorbacks won their second straight tournament by sweeping through the Al Ogletree Classic hosted by Texas-Pan American in Edinburg, Texas, last weekend. The Hogs hit .363 for the weekend and scored 11 runs per contest to beat No. 18 TCU, Stephen F. Austin and UTPA. #17 Arkansas 5, #18 TCU 2 – Nick Schmidt threw 12-scoreless innings and struck out seven to improve to 2-0 this season. Devin Collis closed things out over the final 1.1 innings to record his third save of the season. Wayne Hrozek and Brian Walker ripped back-to-back doubles in the first inning to give the Razorbacks all they needed at the plate. #17 Arkansas 15, Stephen F. Austin 7 – A season-high 15 runs and 19 hits were enough to overcome six errors that led to five unearned runs by the Lumberjacks. Trey Holloway (1-0) earned the win with three scoreless, hitless innings of relief. Hrozek, Chris Hollensworth, James Ewing and Matt Willard all recorded three hits while Jake Dugger and Danny Hamblin had two RBI apiece.#17 Arkansas 13, Texas-Pan American 2 – The Hogs overcame another bad day in the field with a stellar outing at the plate and another solid outing on the mound by junior college transfer Chris Rhoads. Walker led the Razorbacks’ 14 hit attack with three hits and two RBI. Hollensworth, Hamblin and Arnold also chipped in with two RBI each. Rhoads threw seven strong innings, allowing just two unearned runs on five hits. He stuckout a career-best seven and walked just one.
Razorbacks Climb in National Polls Arkansas climbs in most national polls this week after improving to 6-0 on the season. Baseball America was the only publication the Hogs didn’t move up in, leaving Arkansas at No. 17. The NCBWA moved UA into its top 10 at No. 9. The Razorbacks finally moved into Collegiate Baseball’s top 30 for the first time this season at No. 24. SEBaseball.com has the Razorbacks ranked the highest at No. 6 with RosenblattReport.com listing the Hogs at No. 12.
Schmidt Named Pro-Line Cap National Pitcher of the Week Nick Schmidt added to his long list of honors on Tuesday, Feb. 14, when the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) named the Arkansas left-hander the Pro-Line Cap National Pitcher of the Week. He also captured SEC Pitcher of the Week honors for his efforts. The sophomore from St. Louis, Mo., quickly displaced any notion of a sophomore jinx in his season debut against perennial power Oklahoma State at the Jaguar Invitational in Mobile, Ala. Schmidt started and pitched the first six innings of the 12th no-hitter in school history. He struck out six and walked three on 87 pitches. It was the first time in 71 years of recorded baseball at Oklahoma State that the Cowboys had been held without a hit in a nine-inning game. He followed that up the next week by tossing six-more hitless innings in a 5-2 win over No. 18 TCU. He has not allowed a hit in 12 innings of work this season while striking out 13 and walking four.
The Combined No-Hitter Nick Schmidt, Brian McLelland and Devin Collis combined for the 12th no-hitter in Arkansas history on Saturday, Feb. 11, against Oklahoma State in the Jaguar Invitational in Mobile, Ala. Schmidt threw the first six innings before McLelland came on to hold OSU hitless for a frame. Collis carved up the Cowboys over the final two innings. It marked the first time in 71-recorded years of OSU baseball that the Cowboys had been held hitless in a nine-inning game. The no-hitter was the first for Arkansas since Scott Roehl’s no-no against Kansas State on March 20, 2001, in Shreveport, La. It was the first combined no-hitter since Brian Cook and Brian Dennison teamed up to hold Evangel without a hit on April 2, 1991. More on all 12 Arkansas no-hitters can be found on page 116 of your 2006 Razorback baseball media guide.
RosenblattReport.com Tabs Schmidt with National Honors Schmidt was also recognized as the national pitcher of week by RosenblattReport.com on Tuesday, Feb. 14, after his impressive showing against Oklahoma State. RosenblattReport.com was the only outlet to name Schmidt to one of their preseason All-America teams.
Dugger Powering the Hogs’ OffenseRazorbacks’ junior left fielder Jake Dugger has reminded everyone why he earned freshman All-America honors following the 2004 season over the first two weeks of the 2006 season. The Omaha, Neb., native is hitting .440 with a .760 slugging percentage, a .533 on-base percentage, two home runs and seven RBI. His two home runs came on Sunday, Feb. 12, to propel the Hogs to an 8-7 win over host South Alabama. Dugger finished that first weekend with a .538 batting average and a 1.077 slugging percentage. He leads the team in multiple-hit games with four, multiple-RBI games with two and has hit in five-of-six game this season.
Boyce Climbing Up Arkansas’ Record BooksCharley Boyce is climbing up the Arkansas record books each time he takes the field. The senior from Broken Arrow, Okla., is the school’s all-time leader in career games started with 47. Boyce is second in career victories (27), fourth in career appearances (70) and second in all-time innings pitched (335.2). Boyce is also eighth in career strikeouts with 206. Boyce has a career ERA of 3.43.His sophomore and junior seasons also rank as some of the best in school history. Boyce’s 11 wins last season are tied for the third-most in a single season, while his 10 victories in 2004 are tied for eighth. His 19 starts in 2004 are tied for the most in school history. Boyce’s 122.1 innings in 2005 are the second-most in a single season in school history, while his 115.1 innings in 2004 rank eighth.
Gentry to Miss Two Weeks with Broken HandArkansas center fielder Craig Gentry will miss at least the next two weeks with a broken bone in his left hand. The senior could be available as a late-inning defensive replacement or a pinch runner as soon as this weekend’s series with Louisiana Tech, but he will not be able to hit. Gentry injured the hand in practice on Wednesday, Feb. 15, when he was hit on the hand in practice. The injury wasn’t detected at first and Gentry started Friday against TCU and went 3 for 3 before leaving due to pain in the hand. The fracture was reveled in x-rays on Friday evening.
Arkansas Running Wild Again This Season Dave Van Horn’s Razorbacks are up to their old tricks again this season. Six games into the 2006 schedule Arkansas has swiped 14 bases in 17 attempts for an average of 2.33 per contest. UA was second in the SEC a year ago with 108 stolen bases after leading the league in 2004 with 112 pilfers. The school record for stolen bases in a season is 155 set in 1983. The Razorbacks would need to average 2.77 stolen bases per game in a 56-game regular season to surpass the 1983 club.
Collis Handling Closer Duties Senior left-hander Devin Collis has quickly taken hold of the role as the Hogs’ closer in 2006. The St. Charles, Mo., native has three saves in three appearances this season with a 2.08 ERA, three strikeouts and no walks in 4.1 innings. Collis was 2-0 without a save and a 4.69 ERA in 48 innings last season.
Live Stats on Hogwired.com New and improved live stats for Razorback baseball games are available to everyone on Hogwired.com this season. Up-to-the-minute scoring, boxscores and play-by-plays can be found under the ‘Live Stats’ link on the left side of the Hogwired.com homepage. Once in the live stats page click on the camera icon next to the event you want to follow.
RazorZone to Feature Live Webcast Both games of Friday’s double header with Louisiana Tech from Baum Stadium will be available live in the RazorZone. The video board feed normally reserved for in-house televisions and suite holders will be streamed in the RazorZone at Hogwired.com. All home games that do not conflict with televised games or the SEC Game of the Week on FSN will be streamed on RazorZone. There will also be selected road games at Florida and LSU that can been seen on the RazorZone. The RazorZone is a subscription package ($9.95 a month) through Hogwired.com that features live audio, video and special features of Razorback athletics.
Preseason Polls Tout RazorbacksArkansas is ranked among the nation’s best in the 2006 preseason rankings. Prognosticators have the Hogs anywhere from 14th to 33rd in the preseason polls.Baseball America ranks the Razorbacks 18th in the nation, while Collegiate Baseball has the Hogs all the way down at 33rd. The NCBWA picked Arkansas at No. 19, while the USA Today/ESPN Coaches’ Poll ranks the Razorbacks 23rd. The two major internet rankings, SEBaseball.com and RosenblattReport.com have the Hogs ranked 15th and 14th, respectively. Defending national champion Texas is a consensus preseason No. 1 with Florida or Clemson holding down the No. 2 spot.
Hogs Post 3.15-Team GPA During Fall SemesterThe Arkansas baseball team proved they were truly student-athletes during the 2005 fall semester with an impressive 3.15-team grade point average. The 3.15-team GPA was the highest of any male team on campus with 26 of 41 players earning a 3.0 or better GPA. Razorback position players compiled a 3.27 GPA, while the pitching staff put together a 3.0 GPA during the fall. Senior right-handed pitcher Charley Boyce and former shortstop Scott Hode received their degrees in December, while Trey Holloway and Josh Smith are scheduled to graduate in May. Two Hogs, freshmen Taylor Ardoin and Brad Secrist, earned perfect 4.0 GPAs during the fall. Eleven Razorbacks posted GPAs of 3.5 or better during the fall, including Brian Walker (3.91), Thomas Hauskey (3.86), Lee Land (3.83), Brandon Barr (3.83), Brian McLelland (3.82), Hunter London (3.75), Trey Holloway (3.69), Jake Dugger (3.60), Shaun Seibert (3.60), James Ewing (3.60) and Danny Hamblin (3.53).
Game-Winning HitsComing through with the game-winning base hit is not an easy thing to do. Here we will track the Razorback players that come through in the clutch this season. Jake Dugger is leading the way for Arkansas this season with three in five games.
DatePlayerResult (Inning)2/11 vs. Oklahoma State,Brian Walker,1B, 2 RBI (6th)2/12 at South Alabama,Jake Dugger,HR, 2 RBI (6th)2/17 vs. #18 TCU,Wayne Hrozek,2B, 2 RBI (1st)2/18 vs. Stephen F. Austin,Jake Dugger,1B, RBI (3rd)2/19 at Texas-Pan American,Jake Dugger,1B, RBI (5th)
Baseball America’s Preseason Look at the SECBaseball America tabbed the Razorbacks 18th nationally headed into the 2006 in its preseason poll. The publication also picked the Hogs second in the SEC’s Western Division behind Mississippi State and just ahead of LSU. That projected finish also nabs Arkansas a NCAA Tournament according to Baseball America. On the individual front BA did not name any Hogs to the first-team preseason all-conference team. But several Razorbacks were singled-out by the publication after a polling of the league’s coaches. • Sophomore LHP Nick Schmidt was named the SEC’s fourth-best prospect in the 2007 MLB Draft. • Senior center fielder Craig Gentry was selected as the best defensive outfielder in the SEC. • Senior RHP Charley Boyce was picked to have the best control.
Schmidt Named 15th-Best Sophomore by Baseball America The Razorbacks left-handed pitcher Nick Schmidt was named the 15th-best sophomore in the country by Baseball America. The publication lists the top 50 collegiate baseball players in each class as chosen by the Major League scouts.
SEBaseball.com Tabs Schmidt Preseason Pitcher of the YearSophomore left-handed pitcher Nick Schmidt was named the 2006 Preseason Pitcher of the Year in the Southeastern Conference by SEBaseball.com. Schmidt posted an 8-2 last season with a 2.80 ERA in 99.2 innings. He also led the team in strikeouts with 89.
RosenblattReport.com Selects Schmidt and Hamblin 3rd All-AmericansDanny Hamblin and Nick Schmidt earned preseason All-America honors by RosenblattReport.com. Hamblin got the nod after leading Arkansas in almost every offensive category as a sophomore. The Rowlett, Texas, native hit .341 with 19 doubles, 10 home runs, a .420 on-base percentage and a .573 slugging percentage. The left-handed Schmidt was named to the third-team after a stellar freshman campaign. As the Hogs’ No. 1 starter, he posted an 8-2 record with a 2.80 ERA and 89 strikeouts in 99.2 innings. Schmidt was named the SEC Freshman of the Year by SEBaseball.com and was on everyone’s freshmen All-America team in 2005.
Hamblin Named First-Team All-Conference by SEBaseball.comSEBaseball.com named Arkansas first baseman Danny Hamblin and LHP Nick Schmidt to its first-team preseason All-SEC squad. Schmidt was a freshman All-American a season ago after an 8-2 record, a 2.80 ERA and 89 strikeouts. Hamblin led almost every offensive category for the Razorbacks as a sophomore with a .341 batting average, 19 doubles, 10 home runs and 49 RBI. The Hogs also had two second-team selections by SEBaseball.com in center fielder Craig Gentry and starting pitcher Charley Boyce. Gentry produced outstanding numbers for the Razorbacks a season ago after taking over in center field in late March. The Fort Smith native hit .311 with 12 doubles and 18 stolen bases. Boyce pitched out of just about every role for the Hogs in 2005, finishing with an 11-10 record and a 3.53 ERA in 122.1 innings. Florida’s Matt LaPorta was selected as SEBaseball.com’s Hitter of the Year.
Butler Joins Hogs’ StaffTodd Butler joined the Razorbacks’ staff at the beginning of July as the hitting coach and recruiting coordinator. He came to Arkansas after eight years as an assistant coach for Alabama and three seasons as the head coach at his alma mater McNeese State. He was an assistant coach at Alabama from 1995-2000, helping the Tide to three College World Series appearances and four SEC Tournament Championships. He served as the Crimson Tide’s hitting coach and outfield coach in his first stint in Tuscaloosa. In 2001, Butler took over the reigns of the McNeese State program and guided the Cowboys to a 90-83 (.520) record in three seasons. He led McNeese State to a Southland Tournament Championship and a trip to the NCAA Houston Regional in 2003. Butler returned to Alabama in the summer of 2003 and has served as the team’s recruiting coordinator, hitting instructor, infield coach and first base coach for the past two seasons. Bubbs Merrill is now the volunteer assistant and Clay Goodwin assumed the student assistant position.
Hogs Believed to Lead Country in Actual Attendance The NCAA and Southeastern Conference recognize paid attendance as their method of ranking attendance, but Arkansas keeps both an actual attendance and paid attendance. In 2005, the Razorbacks also set a school record in actual attendance with 146,902 fans showing up at Baum Stadium. That averages out to 5,247 fans per game and is believed to have led the country last season. In an informal survey by the Baton Rouge (La.) Advocate, Arkansas led all SEC schools in actual attendance. The Razorbacks’ average of 5,247 fans in actual attendance would rank fifth nationally on the NCAA’s paid attendance rankings. LSU finished second in The Advocate’s survey of actual attendance with 3,922 fans per game. Below is a breakdown of both paid and actual attendance at Baum Stadium over the past three seasons and a look ahead to the 2006 season.
Razorbacks Pick Captains for 2005The Razorbacks selected their 2006 captains by a vote of the team prior to the start of the season. Senior pitcher Charley Boyce, junior first baseman Danny Hamblin and sophomore catcher Brian Walker were chosen to represent the Razorbacks this season.
Player Number Corrections From Media Guide There are a few numbers changes from your 2006 Arkansas baseball media guide. The new numbers are reflected on the roster page on page seven of this notes package. The corrected numbers are #30 Chris Rhoads, #37 Tommy McClain, #40 Brett Bollman, #43 Hunter London and #44 Brad Secrist.
Download: Louisiana Tech Release.pdf