McCleney was one of 26 finalists for the award last season and was a top 10 finalist two years ago as a sophomore. This is Osorio’s first career appearance on the "Watch List" and she is joined by four other sophomore pitchers.
McCleney, who enters her senior season as the Alabama career batting average leader, was second in the SEC last year with a .436 season clip. She led the league in walks (61) and on-base percentage (.588) while fifth in runs scored (69) and sixth in doubles (14). McCleney earned her third All-American nod in 2015, her second as a first-team honoree, while also taking home First Team Academic All-America honors for a second-straight season. She was named the Academic All-America Team Member of the Year for Division-I softball.
In conference play last season, Osorio led the SEC with a 1.60 ERA and 109 strikeouts over 91.2 innings pitched. Eight of her 10 conference wins came against ranked opponents, with five of those against top-10 teams. In addition to being named the SEC Freshman of the Year, she was a Second Team NFCA All-American and a top-three finalist for the NFCA Freshman of the Year award.
These two women are excellent ballplayers. Osorio reckons to have a little more help with run support this season, while Haylie McCleney (and her bulldog) are as clutch as it gets anywhere in the nation. This is the first award watchlist of the season for the two, but it won't be the last.
National Signing Day 2017 is only 365 days away. Recruiting reporters Erik McKinney, Derek Tyson and Tom VanHaaren join ESPN's Phil Murphy to talk the hottest programs and most coveted prospects in the ESPN Junior 300.
National Signing Day is dead; long live National Signing Day. 2017 has already started, and it probably won't surprise you to know that Alabama has already assembled one of the nation's best classes.
Signal-callers are tempted to commit as soon as they receive an offer from the school they've established as their first choice because they realize the possibility that spot otherwise could get taken by someone else. Jake Fromm, a junior at Houston County High School in Warner Robins, Georgia, committed to Alabama last October. He said he made his decision that early because he "knew in my heart that's where I wanted to be" and didn't want to risk passing up the opportunity to play there. "Most of the time only one quarterback (gets signed by) one school," Fromm said, "It's a lot different from receivers, DBs or linebackers, where you can have three or four in a class."
Good stuff from NSD Class of 2017 Alabama QB Jake Fromm. It does seem as though there are two rules: the quarterbacks who necessarily have to commit before their senior season and then for everyone else.
Iowa Senate. Sen. Mark Chelgren, a Republican from Ottumwa, Iowa, has introduced a bill that would prohibit the state's three public universities — the University of Iowa (which lost to Stanford in the Rose Bowl), Iowa State and the University of Northern Iowa — from entering into any cooperation with Stanford until the university apologizes for the band's performance.
Rep. Chelgren wants Stanford to apologizing for mocking Iowa's cows. Well, that's at least what the bill says. Methinks deep down he really wants Stanford to apologize for making a mockery of the notion that Iowa was an elite national team and not rather the beneficiary of an awfully weak P5 division. In a bowl season of blowouts, few were as lopsided and ghastly as what the Trees did to the Hawkeyes.
Power of Pink Meet Friday
Video of the Coach Dana Duckworth Show.
The Tide are off to a very slow start this season, having won just one meet (Auburn, LOL) in four tries. This Friday, the annual Power of Pink meet takes place at Coleman at 7:00 (and is nearly sold-out already) against a competitive but not great Kentucky team. If Alabama loses this one, it may be time to start sounding the alarm: A 1-4 start is not what anyone envisioned, even for a squad that has six freshmen.
Worst idea you'll read today
The committee will discuss possible changes to the rule, which was changed in 2014 to let instant-replay officials confirm or overturn targeting calls made by on-field officials. A targeting foul results in an automatic ejection for the player and a 15-yard penalty. Committee members will potentially grant the instant-replay officials added judgmental flexibility on targeting fouls, and also give them the power to stop the game if they spot a targeting foul that the on-field crew missed.
I have absolutely no idea how this will work. Missed calls are part of the game, yet we're going to allow replay crews to signal to the field crew that a targeting penalty was missed? If this is the case, then there are so many other penalties that need to be reviewable, not just ones arbitrarily assigned by the committee.
The other issue, of course, is that a replay official is not a game official. Game officials know the rules intimately and have been running on the field with these kids for a decade or longer. A replay official can spot the ball, adjudge the game clock, and otherwise help be a second set of eyes. I don't think anyone envisioned making those with unknown qualifications or affiliation super-officials, in essence, with the ability to retroactively change game outcomes and player eligibility that were otherwise non-calls or judgment calls.