FAYETTEVILLE – Already honored with one of college baseball’s two biggest awards as the Dick Howser Trophy National Player of the Year, Arkansas senior relief pitcher Kevin Kopps of Coach Dave Van Horn’s SEC champion Razorbacks Thursday was named one of three finalists for the Golden Spikes Award, college baseball’s other major award considered on a baseball par with college football’s Heisman Trophy.
His season concluded at 12-1 with 11 saves and a nationally leading 0.90 earned run average and 131 strikeouts vs. 18 walks in 89 2-3 innings, Kopps and Vanderbilt starting pitchers Kumar Rocker, 13-3, 2.58 with 162 strikeouts vs. 36 walks in 111 2-3 innings, and Jack Leiter, 10-4, 2.08 with 171 strikeouts vs. 42 walks in 104 innings are the the finalists for the Golden Spikes to be awarded in July.
Rocker and Leiter still are playing with Vanderbilt scheduled to play North Carolina State Friday at the College World Series in Omaha.
Kopps becomes Arkansas’ third ever Golden Spikes finalist joining relief pitcher Phillip Stidham, a finalist for Norm DeBriyn’s 1991 Razorbacks, and current Kansas City Royals outfielder Andrew Benintendi, the Golden Spikes and Dick Howser Award winner for Van Horn’s 2015 Razorbacks.
Arkansas Men’s Golf Coach Brad McMakin announced Thursday that Fayetteville native and University of Houston golfer Luke Long
is joining the Razorbacks as a graduate transfer.
Long previously was the Ohio Valley Conference Freshman of the Year at Southern Illinois-Edwardsville, All-Southern Conference as a Tennessee-Chattanooga sophomore and a 2-year letterman at Houston with a UH degree in economics.
“I am excited to have Luke back on The Hill to finish his career as a Razorback,’ McMakin said. “Luke brings a ton of experience to the program and will be a great addition to our program.”