Brinkerhoff named SWAC MVP
Craig Brinkerhoff, center fielder for the USU Eastern Golden Eagle baseball team was a unanimous selection as the Most Valuable Player for NJCAA region 18 and the Scenic West Athletic Conference at the conference tournament held in Carson City, Nevada
Brinkerhoff, a freshman from Kanab, led the conference in home runs (17), slugging percentage and total bases.
Additionally his .411 batting average in conference games and seventeen stolen bases in twenty attempts along with his .952 fielding percentage, illustrate his versatility and the completeness of his game.
A three sport player in Kanab, Brinkerhoff said football was one of his favorites and he was also a starter on the basketball squad.
He stayed true to his small town roots and still enjoys hanging with his friends as the thing he looks forward to the most.
UVU and Dixie colleges have expressed an interest in him joining their programs. But the calls from the scouts from the Cardinals and the Nationals have left him a little bit in a daze.
He looks at it as a great opportunity and would not care what team he played with as long as he got a chance to suit up in the big show.
But for now his plans include a mission and then heading to UVU to try an improve his standing in the MLB draft.
When asked what was the one factor in his success at the plate, he answered, "Confidence. Confidence that a kid from a small town could play with anyone. Playing at CEU was a good experience and allowed me to get my feet wet. I was around players who were all looking for the same thing."
"It was good to be recognized and it was really nice that we went farther in the tournament than before and could show what CEU is about."
Other players receiving all region recognition for the Golden Eagle baseball team were catcher Mitch Cowder, of Salem, second team All-Region and Tyler Slesk, of Seattle, Wash., third team All-Defense.