Not a member yet?
Subscribe Now!



Juco : : Rankings
Junior College: Top 50 Teams
   
Published: Friday, February 04, 2011


JUNIOR COLLEGES, 2011
Top Teams, Prospects

Perfect Game has the most complete pre-season coverage of baseball in the junior-college ranks available anywhere, and you can access all our information on the top teams and prospects. We have a national ranking of the Top 50 Teams, along with capsules on all 50. You can also access our junior-college overview for the 2011 season, and well as our exclusive list of the Top 200 Prospects for this year’s draft.

JUNIOR COLLEGE BASEBALL
TOP 50 TEAMS, 2011

COMPILED BY ALLAN SIMPSON



1. HOWARD / Texas (45-10 in 2010)

Critical injuries sidetracked the Hawks bid to repeat as national champs in 2010, but fireballing RHPs Derrick Bleeker (transfer from Arkansas) and Damien Magnifico (injured in 2010; Mets’ fifth-round pick in 2009) headline a deep pitching staff. Both pitchers were clocked at 97 mph in the fall. Florida International-bound Nathan Burns (.394-12-53, 29 SB) and Baylor transfer Tyler Collins, both outfielders, are offensive stalwarts. A key for the Hawks will be the continued emergence of Oklahoma-bound 3B/RHP Tony Calhoun (.356-9-56), who didn’t pitch as a freshman but was clocked at 94 mph in the fall.

 

2. SAN JACINTO /Texas (52-12 in 2010)

The Gators made a record 12th appearance in the national title game a year ago, and return ace LHP Miguel Pena (14-2, 2.51) and Ole Miss-bound C Ryan Hornback (.347-1-37), along with RHP Tommy Collier (2-0, 0.00) and LHP David Rollins (1-0, 3.52), who missed most of last year with season-ending injuries but combined for 21 wins in 2009. Key supplemental pieces include OF Jarrett Higgins (.317-5-35, 29 SB), Arkansas-bound LHP Tyler Wright (1-0, 4.50) and Southern Miss-bound RHP Cam Giannini (Liberty transfer).

 

3. STATE COLLEGE OF FLORIDA / MANATEE (37-15 in 2010)

The defending Florida JC state champs feature a nice mix of returning players like SS-turned-RHP Nick Goody (0-1, 2.55), an LSU recruit whose fastball was clocked at 94 mph in the fall, and 3B L.B. Dantzler (.286-1-21), MVP of the Florida Collegiate Summer League; transfers like ex-Florida RHP Ben Brown and ex-Central Florida 2B Anthony Caronia; and incoming freshmen like OF Rock Shoulders (Red Sox, 20th rounder) and RHP/SS Luis Benitez (Blue Jays, 31st-rounder).

 

4. FEATHER RIVER / California (31-7 in 2010)

The Golden Eagles are mysteriously missing from the top of the California JC pre-season rankings, but feature the state’s top three returning hitters in OFs Dayton Alexander (.508-7-52) and Victor Mendoza (.500-10-52), and 2B Kyle Stone (.497-0-21). Texas Christian-bound RHP Cody Anderson (0-1, 3.21), a 17th-round pick in the 2010 draft whose fastball peaked at 94 mph in the fall, is the top-ranked prospect in the California juco ranks, and he’ll be complemented in the Feather River rotation by LHP Tyler Hoelzen (5-2, 1.66).

 

5. WALTERS STATE / Tennessee (42-9 in 2010)

The Senators have been a JC power since winning the 2006 national title. Power-hitting OF Cody Stubbs, a transfer from Tennessee and North Carolina recruit, could be a premium draft in June, and he’ll get plenty of offensive support from returning 1B and former Washington Nationals 15th-rounder Corey Davis (.346-3-39). RHP Chris Costantino (2-0, 3.77) returns for a full season after taking a medical red-shirt early in the 2010 season. His fastball was clocked at 93 mph in the fall. LHP Shane Grimm (7-0, 3.19) is a Kentucky recruit, while RHPs Cody Poarch (UNC Greensboro) and Jordan Cooper (Mississippi) are prominent D-I transfers. The Senators received a further shot in the arm after Christmas when OF Marcus Davis and RHP Dale Innes, both one-time top prep prospects, transferred in from Louisiana State and Clemson, respectively.

 

6. CENTRAL ARIZONA (46-20 in 2010)

Twelve players from CAC, the 2002 national champs, committed to NCAA D-I schools in the November early-signing period, led by rapidly-improving C Max Rossiter (.338-1-20, 19 2B), one of three Arizona State recruits, and highly-athletic Utah-bound OF Keenyn Walker (.299-2-16, 21 SB). Ex-Long Beach State 3B R.J. Santigate and ex-Texas 3B Jordan Weymouth lead an impressive wave of newcomers, while Southern California-bound RHP Zach Dando (4-2, 3.54) will step in the No. 1 starter and ASU-bound RHP Josh Dahl (3-1, 5.33) will close with his 95 mph fastball.

 

7. NAVARRO / Texas (39-20 in 2010)

A wave of impressive newcomers should play key roles for the Bulldogs, notably 6-foot-6 ex-Oklahoma RHP Drew Verhagen, who has returned to full health and cranked his fastball up to 94 mph in the fall. He’ll join holdovers like 2B Christian Stringer (.352-6-32), ex-Texas C J.T. Files (.380-2-30) and ex-Houston 1B Casey Grayson (.344-4-31). Verhagen is a Vanderbilt recruit and one of nine Bulldogs who made commitments to Division I schools in the fall.

 

8. PALOMAR / California (24-15 in 2010)

The Comets feature North Carolina State-bound RHP Ryan Wilkins (6-3, 3.32), and numerous prominent transfers from Division I schools, notably ex-San Diego State OF Justin Bellez, ex-Arizona State SS Tyler Bernard and ex-Southern California 1B Casey Husband. Bellez and Bernard did not play as freshmen, but Bellez was clocked up to 95 mph in the fall and Bernard is a former 20th-rounder out of high school who is headed for Virginia Tech.

 

9. EASTERN OKLAHOMA STATE (37-22 in 2010)

The Mountaineers added two prominent freshman arms—RHP Jonathan Gray (Royals, 13th round), RHP Mason Justice (Red Sox, 21st round)—and transfer pitchers from Oklahoma and Oklahoma State to a solid returning nucleus that includes Cal State Fullerton-bound SS Chris Munoz (.358-15-54, 27 SB, 6 SV as closer), and top winner Jesse Baird (9-2, 3.86). Baird, Gray, Wichita State-bound LHP Brandon Bargas (transfer from Oklahoma) and Justice should form a formidable four-man rotation, while Munoz, whose fastball has been clocked at 93 mph, will close.

 

10. MIDDLE GEORGIA (38-22 in 2010)

The four-time former national champs may have as much raw talent as any junior college team in the country, but much of it is untested. LHP Matt Taylor, a transfer from Alabama who has committed to Georgia, is the state’s best JC prospect and takes over the No. 1 spot in the rotation. Sophomore RHP Jesse Scott, another Georgia recruit, steps into the No. 2 spot. RHP/OF Demondre Arnold, a Tampa Bay draft pick out of high school who was clocked at 94 mph in the fall, and speedy OF Patrick Smith, a Boston draft pick, highlight an impressive freshman crop.

 

11. CHIPOLA / Florida (27-25 in 2010)

Chipola, the 2007 national champs, stumbled in 2010, even with a roster that included two prominent unsigned picks from the 2009 draft: first-rounder LeVon Washington and second-rounder Jake Eliopoulos. Both players were one and done, and the Indians have re-tooled for 2011 with transfers like ex-Cal State Fullerton C Geno Escalante and ex-Mississippi State LHP Luke Bole, and prominent freshmen like Louisiana 1B Austin Southall (Giants/19th round) and OF/LHP Derrick Pitts, one of the best two-way talents ever recruited by the school.

 

12. IOWA WESTERN (51-12 in 2010)

The Reivers pulled off one of the biggest upsets in recent Junior College World Series history, winning the 2010 title without a single player deemed good enough to even be drafted. That happenstance is unlikely to occur again as the Reivers will seek to defend their title with a roster that includes the likes of North Carolina State-bound LHP Taylor Eikenberry (6-0, 3.73), sophomore SS Brandon Bass (.372-6-52) and two promising freshmen, 3B Derek Tomscha, a Phillies draft pick out of high school, and hard-throwing righthander Jake Thompson.

 

13. SPARTANBURG METHODIST / South Carolina (46-10 in 2010)

The Pioneers boast the state’s top JC prospect, OF Travis Burnside (.394-5-36), and have surrounded him with a deep roster that includes holdover players like College of Charleston-bound 1B Tyler Jackson (.374-8-41) and RHP Corey Rhoney (9-1, 2.85), and Division I transfers like former Clemson 3B Seth Neely, Elon RHP Ryan Gunther and South Carolina RHP/3B Greg Harrison, and former Chipola (Fla.) JC 1B/3B Cody Martin.

 

14. JOHNSON COUNTY / Kansas (44-14 in 2010)

A big 2010 season ended abruptly for the Cavaliers with consecutive losses in the Kansas sub-regional tournament, but the team returns the two best JC arms in the state in sophomore RHPs Jeff Soptic (5-2, 5.08) and Vince Spilker (0-1, 2.25), both clocked at 94 in fall. They head up a deep Cavaliers pitching staff.

 

15. NORTHEAST TEXAS (42-17 in 2010)

Fireballing RHP Zach Cates, a converted catcher, became an unlikely choice as the top JC player from Texas in last year’s draft, but he was hardly the only prospect on the Eagles roster. Among the holdovers from 2010 are Oklahoma State-bound RHP/SS Mark Robinette (7-2, 2.55; .356-2-34), Louisiana State-bound OF Andrew Ray (.425-8-60) and Oklahoma-bound RHP Austin O’Donnell (10-1, 1.80). The Eagles also have three other D-I commits. While Robinette and O’Donnell may occupy the 1-2 spots in the rotation, the best arms on the staff could well belong to LHP Kyle Barbeck, a Mississippi transfer who will attend Missouri in 2012, and freshman RHP Logan Taylor.

 

16. SANTA ANA / California (31-10 in 2010)

The Dons suffered heavy losses from 2010, but return RHP Ben Burke (6-2, 3.21), and OFs Gary Apelian (.324-5-45) and Taylor Richardson (.322-8-29). They will pin their state-championship hopes on three prominent four-year transfers: OF Dylan Jones (Oregon), 3B Julian Barzilli (Fresno State) and IF Zach Luther (Texas A&M).

 

17. MIAMI-DADE / Florida (37-13 in 2010)

Former Florida International coach Danny Price takes over as the new coach at Miami-Dade and got an unexpected bonus when former North Carolina outfielder Brian Goodwin, who was suspended for the 2011 season at UNC, enrolled after Christmas. He was immediately installed as the No. 1 prospect in this year’s junior-college class and has a solid shot of going in the first round in June. Goodwin joins holdover RHPs Jharel Cotton (4-2, 2.77), an East Carolina recruit, and Derek Law (3-5, 3.06), along with returning C Jorge Saez (.319-5-28). 1B Ozney Guillen, son of Chicago White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen, highlights an impressive freshman crop.

 

18. FRESNO / California (30-10 in 2010)

RHP Michael York (8-2, 2.78) and SS Bryan Barger (.373-1-28) are among the few returning players for the Rams, but the perennial California power has bolstered its roster with Southern California-bound RHP Tyson Perez, who missed last season with an injury, and ex-Fresno State OF Clay Cedarquist, a Santa Clara recruit.

 

19. YAVAPAI / Arizona (42-20 in 2010)

The Roughriders boast the best prospect in the Arizona JC ranks in Arizona-bound sophomore RHP Kenny Giles, whose fastball touched 98 mph in the fall, but he may be hard pressed to be one of the more effective pitchers on the Yavapai staff unless he addresses lingering command issues. Two four-year transfers, RHPs Andrew Walter (San Diego) and Zak Miller (New Mexico), and Utah-bound RHP Tony Vocca (1-0, 2.55), should occupy the first three spots in the rotation, while Virginia-bound C Nolan Clark will hit in the cleanup spot and be a stalwart defensively, and Southern California-bound 2B Albert Alvarez will provide speed at the top of the order.

 

20. TEMPLE / Texas (39-25 in 2010)

The Leopards made a surprise run to the Junior College World Series in 2010. They’ll field sophomores at almost every position in the field this spring, but the team’s key to sustaining its success is a talented pitching staff that will have freshmen in the 1-2 spots in the rotation. RHP Mark Blackmar, a Kansas City Royals draft pick, can already command four pitches, while LHP Tyler Nurdin has been clocked in the low 90s. LHP Alan Scott, a Sam Houston State recruit, and LHP Kevin Lock (4-1, 4.09), the hardest thrower on the staff at 94 mph, add depth.

 

21. CHATTAHOOCHEE VALLEY / Alabama (42-8 in 2010)

The Pirates set a school record for wins and rose to No. 2 in the nation a year ago before a late fade, and face a significant rebuilding job. But they boast the top three JC prospects in Alabama in two prominent four-year transfers, 1B Robert Shipman (.263-4-25 at Georgia) and OF Bryce Dial (12 AB at Georgia Southern, but 19 HR as a high-school senior) and RHP Zach Helewski, who was clocked up to 95 mph in the fall and heads up an all-freshman rotation.

 

22. HEARTLAND / Illinois (45-11 in 2010)

Coming off a school-record 45-win season, the Hawks begin 2011 as the top-ranked team in the NJCAA Division II ranks. LHP Jerad Grundy, a transfer from Miami (Fla.), heads up a list of eight Hawks who have made commitments to Division I schools. Grundy, clocked at 93 mph in the fall, is slated to attend Kentucky in 2012, although as the state’s top-ranked JC prospect could earn plenty of attention from scouts this spring. Grundy heads a rotation that also includes Illinois State-bound RHP Chris Razo (9-3, 3.98), Illinois-Chicago-bound Mike McKinley (transfer from Indiana) and Eastern-Kentucky-bound RHP Andrew Wilson. All four have touched at least 90. OF Zac Zeller (.387-12-64) is Heartland’s top returning bat.

 

23. CHATTANOOGA STATE / Tennessee (38-17 in 2010)

The Tigers made their first trip to the Junior College World Series in 2010, upstaging state rival Walters State in the process, and return four key regulars from that team. Back for a second year are SS Dylan Coleman (.372-4-49, 16 SB), and the entire outfield of J.D. Pullen (.407-4-37, 24 SB), Gabe Herman (.405-2-40, 31 SB) and Isaac Davenport (.389-0-25, 22 SB). RHP Alan Walden, a Tennessee transfer, and LHP Pat Merkling, who began his collegiate career at Auburn, head up a revamped pitching staff.

 

24. WESTERN NEVADA (43-17 in 2010)

The Wildcats have traditionally been overshadowed by Southern Nevada, but may have a leg up on their in-state counterparts this year—in part because of a deep roster of their own, in part because of turmoil that has swirled around the CSN program since last season. Arizona State-bound 3B Kevin Taylor (.323-3-40 with wood) is the team’s top offensive threat while RHP Tim Peterson (4-1, 2.52) moves in as the No. 1 starter, but they’ll get plenty of support from two Oregon transfers, freshman 1B Sean Potkay and sophomore RHP Chris Garrison, along with New Mexico State-bound C Patrick McMeel (.284-3-18) and an impressive freshman class.

 

25. PITT / North Carolina (41-13 in 2010)

South Carolina-bound SS Tanner Lovick (.397-7-47) and UNC Wilmington-bound 1B Tyler Molinaro (.344-9-48) are the team’s top returning position prospects and RHP Kevin Buran (2-1, 4.26) ascends to the No. 1 spot in the rotation, but the Bulldogs will rely mostly on newcomers this season. UNC Greensboro transfer Jacob Golliday slides in at catcher and Appalachian State transfer Ryan Stetson in left field, and ex-Georgia Southern RHP Ryan McCallin becomes part of the rotation, but the most exciting young arm is freshman RHP Christian Pfaff, a 25th-round pick of the Cleveland Indians last June. He was clocked at 91 mph in the fall, fastest on the staff. A second promising North Carolina prep pitcher, RHP Jay Gause, might have made an equal impact had he not been lost for the season with a shoulder injury.

 

26. WABASH VALLEY / Illinois (50-12 in 2010)

A 50-12 and favored Wabash Valley squad pushed eventual national champion Iowa Western to the limit in regional play a year ago, and should be in position to make amends this season for falling just short of a World Series berth. Among the returning talent is SS Edmanuel Rivera (.365-7-57) and Murray State-bound RHP Alex Gordon (8-2, 3.15), the team’s top starter. Both players should have a strong supporting cast with the addition of Louisville-bound C Shane Crain, who spent last season at Indiana State; ex-Campbell sophomore 3B Noah Zipko; and highly-regarded freshman RHP Conor Fisk, a Milwaukee Brewers draft pick.

 

27. BELLEVUE / Washington (32-20 in 2010)

Washington State-bound RHP Kyle Swannack (6-5, 2.47) and Hawaii-bound RHP Jake Collier (2-3, 3.78) will be stabilizing forces in the Bulldogs rotation, but neither has the upside of freshman RHP Adrian Sampson, who would have been one of Washington’s top prep drafts a year ago had he not missed the 2010 season with Tommy John surgery. His fastball is back up to 91 and he may be a better prospect than older brother Julian, a 12th-round pick of the Philadelphia Phillies in 2007. Liberty-bound C Tyler Cox (.362, 34 SB) and South Alabama-bound SS Cory Urquhart (.267, 41 RBIs) are dependable players in the field.

 

28. CHABOT / California (32-11 in 2010)

The Gladiators boast one of the top arms in California in Long Beach State-bound RHP Mike Botelho (4-2, 1.80, 5 SV), and have surrounded him with returning players like RHPs Brandon Plotz (5-3) and Brian Nelson (4-1), C Mike Gallegos (.341-10-38) and OF Jake Whitney (.310-7-51).

 

29. SOUTHERN NEVADA (58-10 in 2010)

With a roster that included teenage sensation Bryce Harper (.443-31-98, 20 SB), the top pick in the 2010 draft, and eight other draft picks, the Coyotes were primed to win a national title a year ago. It didn’t happen as they stumbled at the end, and the program has endured its share of turmoil since as head coach Tim Chambers left for Nevada-Las Vegas, new coach Chris Sheff lasted only four months and Nick Garritano became the team’s third coach in less than six months. The roster turnover is equally dramatic, though some of the newcomers on the pitching staff include LHP Chipper Smith, a California JC transfer who was clocked at 92 in the fall; ex-University of San Diego RHP Sam Wolff, who touched 96; and LHP Matt Dunbar, a Cal Poly Pomona transfer who has committed to attend Arizona State as a junior. Former UNLV OF Kris Kaplan is the team’s biggest offensive hope.

 

30. SANTA FE / Florida (26-16 in 2010)

Ex-Georgia RHP Malcolm Clapsaddle and Georgia prep OF Trey Griffin are the top pro talents on a Saints squad that advanced to the Junior College World Series championship game just two years ago. They are joined by holdover 2B T.J. Spina (.377-8-28), a UNC Greensboro recruit, and former Florida Gulf Coast OF Jay Laurienzo. Six-foot-6 LHP Ben O’Shea, who walked six and struck out 60 at Roger Williams (R.I.) College as a freshman, will add pitching depth, along with freshman LHP Chris Lee, a Chicago White Sox draft pick last June.

 

31. JEFFERSON / Missouri (38-14 in 2010)

3B Nathan Goro, a Wichita State transfer who is headed for Oral Roberts in 2012, is Missouri’s top-rated JC prospect, and he joins a lineup that returns OF Drew Levi (.304-12-50), the team’s top run producer in 2010, and James Madison-bound 1B Casey Goss (.366-1-30). LHP Dalton Friend (5-1, 3.75) is the Vikings top returning starter, and he is joined in the rotation by a pair of Arkansas State recruits.

 

32. COWLEY COUNTY / Kansas (39-16 in 2010)

The Tigers are two-time Junior College World Series champions and look to return to the national tournament after falling just short a year ago. Three sophomores with major Division I commitments are again expected to do much of the heavy lifting. OF Aaron Rea (.348-7-66, 17 SB) is headed for Wichita State, while two Oklahoma State recruits, Robbie Rea (5-3, 3.80; .363-1-28) and Philip Wilson (6-3, 4.09; .360-3-24), will play major roles on the Tigers pitching staff (Wilson as a starter, Rea as the closer) while holding down regular jobs in the infield.

 

33. GEORGIA PERIMETER (36-19 in 2010)

Two former Division I pitchers, ex-Clemson LHP Kevin Kyle and ex-Oklahoma State RHP Trevor Walch, will be stabilizing forces atop the Jaguars rotation, but the team’s fortunes in 2011 could rest on the development of sophomore RHP Jarius Rhodes (2-2, 6.62), whose fastball peaked at 96 mph in the fall, and sophomore SS LeAndre Davis (.240-0-15), a 13th-round draft pick in 2009. Both players struggled as freshmen, but clearly have the raw talent to become impact players at the junior-college level.

 

34. CONNORS STATE / Oklahoma (50-12 in 2010)

Connors State held the No. 1 spot nationally for several weeks in 2010, but the Cowboys faded down the stretch and the program was rocked in December when 26-year coach Perry Keith was suspended for the 2011 season for a violation of NCAA rules. Keith has been replaced on an interim basis by former Connors State assistant Cotton Nye, but the cupboard is hardly bare as the Cowboys return RHP Jake Fisher (10-0, 2.42), IFs Tyler Wheeler (.380-6-45) and Camron Summers (.380-1-32), OF Brodie Ross (.331-9-33) and the team’s best pro prospect, C Heath Holliday (.354-0-12).

 

35. WEATHERFORD / Texas (39-19 in 2010)

The Coyotes will hook their hopes on a pair of significant two-way players: Oklahoma-bound LHP/OF Nick Lee (3-3, 2.78, 68 IP/67 SO; .333-5-53) and Tulane-bound RHP/1B Tucker Oakley (0-0, 6.75; .355-15-40). Lee is considered the better prospect of the two, though Oakley has the best raw power and best power arm (fastball at 94) on the Weatherford roster. RHP Kevin Allen (5-1, 3.68), a Texas Christian recruit, will play a key role as the team’s No. 1 starter.

 

36. LOWER COLUMBIA / Washington (40-5 in 2010)

RHP Jeff Ames (8-1, 2.03), whose fastball routinely reaches 97 mph, is one of the top junior-college arms in the country. He’ll singlehandedly make the Red Devils a factor in the Northwest, but the addition of RHP/3B Ben Ruff, a transfer from Portland, and freshman RHP Nick LaRoy, who was scheduled to attend Washington State until he was re-routed to junior college because of Tommy John surgery, could make the pitching staff formidable. OF Ben McQuown (.336-2-23) is the team’s top returning position player.

 

37. EL CAMINO / California (32-15 in 2010)

The Warriors reached California’s Final Four in 2010 and will pin their hopes of a repeat visit on three key returning players, 3B Chris Vopinek (.373-6-26), 1B Garrett Cooper (.370-4-37) and RHP Andrew Pulido (8-5, 3.38). The 6-foot-6, 210-pound Cooper, an Auburn recruit, also doubles as a pitcher.

 

38. LAMAR / Colorado (48-12 in 2010)

The Runnin’ Lopes feature three New Mexico-bound arms in RHPs Arturo Maltos-Garcia (7-2, 2.91), Brandon Ward-Hersee (3-2, 2.60) and Shane Zaruba (8-0, 2.78), who combined on 201 strikeouts in 179 innings as freshmen. Zaruba, clocked at 94 mph in the fall, returns as the staff ace while Ward-Hersee is back as the closer after shattering the NJCAA single-season record for saves with 25. C/OF Tim Zufall is the team’s best pro prospect, but he’ll have to improve on a .217-0-10 line to be a factor in the 2011 draft.

 

39. LSU-EUNICE (52-13 in 2010)

The Bengals won their third Division II championship in five years in 2010, and coincidentally posted the same number of wins (52) that they did in capturing national titles in 2006 and 2008. A retooled roster includes the likes of freshman 1B Hommy Rosado (Colorado Rockies 11th-round draft pick), sophomore 3B Wes Delatte (Louisiana State transfer) and sophomore 2B/RHP Tyler Theriot (Lamar transfer). The key for the Bengals, however, may be the continued development of Tulane-bound RHP Andrew Reeves (2-2, 9.00) and Louisiana-Lafayette-bound RHP Ben Carter (1-1, 5.94), who will occupy the top two spots in the rotation. Carter was clocked up to 94 mph in the fall.

 

40. McLENNAN / Texas (38-23 in 2010)

Oklahoma-bound SS Garrett Carey (.439-4-64) is the Highlanders best player and prospect, but freshman RHP Corey Holmes and freshman LHP Ryan Merritt also rank among the top 25 JC prospects in Texas. Carey will provide stability to a young everyday roster in the middle of the field, while Louisiana Tech-bound LHP James Ferguson (6-4, 3.41) will add valuable experience to the rotation.

 

41. BLINN / Texas (37-21 in 2010)

The Bucs return two key players from 2010, Houston-bound LHP Matt Hernandez (7-3, 4.04) and UT Arlington-bound OF Brandon Lawrence (.327-9-34), and significantly bolstered their roster with the addition of four Division I transfers: ex-Texas C Nick DeSantiago, ex-Louisiana Tech OF Tyler Boss, ex-Pepperdine RHP Jason Simms and ex-Rice LHP Kevin Hahn. Hernandez has been clocked at 92 mph, while DeSantiago, a lefthanded-hitting catcher with power and arm strength, is the team’s top prospect.

 

42. JOHN A. LOGAN / Illinois (34-19 in 2010)

RHP Cale Wine is coming off Tommy John surgery, but was clocked at 93 mph in the fall and the Louisiana-Monroe recruit has been installed in the No. 1 spot in the Volunteers rotation. He’ll get plenty of support from former Arkansas RHP Eric Shannahan (8-2, 3.24) and RHP Pat Kaminska (7-3, 4.86). OF Brandon Alexander (.379-8-42), also a Louisiana-Monroe recruit, is the team’s top returning offensive threat.

 

43. SEMINOLE STATE / Oklahoma (35-19 in 2010)

Three former Division I players of some note—ex-Washington State RHP/1B Kendall Mayer, ex-Missouri 2B Kale Gaden and ex-Nevada OF Ronnie Mitchell—are penciled in for key roles. They’ll join holdovers like Lamar-bound C Zach Luevanios (.387-12-41), RHP Derek Howell (5-2, 3.99) and RHP Chase Stevens, who went 4-3, 7.00 as a freshman but had a breakout summer in the Prospect League and moves in as the Trojans closer.

 

44. SOUTH MOUNTAIN / Arizona (38-19 in 2010)

Central Arizona and Yavapai are solidly entrenched as the top two junior-college programs in Arizona, but the Cougars are a solid No. 3. They’ll make a run this spring to unseat the big two with the return of Texas Tech-bound SS Trey Ford (.290-4-28) and 3B Derek Mendoza (.352-0-32), four-year transfers like RHPs Tyler Wallace (Northern Colorado) and Mark Hawkenson (Arizona), and 2B Cullen Mahoney (Nevada), and two drafted freshmen, RHP Taylor Kaczmarek and OF Chris Roglen.

 

45. PALM BEACH STATE / Florida (38-14 in 2010)

Three Division I recruits—North Carolina State-bound Bryan Adamek (.383-4-48), Florida International-bound LHP Anthony Colletti (coming off Tommy John surgery, but clocked at 91 mph in the fall) and Miami-bound RHP Vinny Kossak—along with Louisville transfer Alex Blodgett should play key roles for the Panthers, who will otherwise start a freshman-dominated lineup. One of the team’s more intriguing players will be 6-foot-9, 290-pound RHP Ashley Bulluck, a Fairleigh Dickinson transfer who moves in as the closer.

 

46. FAULKNER STATE / Alabama (38-21 in 2010)

The Sun Chiefs were a surprise entry in the 2010 Junior College World Series, and may be better equipped to make an encore visit as they return top starter Josh Fein (7-4, 4.94) and closer Joe Hernandez (6-1, 3.75, 12 SV), along with three regulars, 1B D.J. Turo (.355-2-24), and OFs Jared Brannon (.324-0-25, 25 SB) and Lloyd Negus (.357-0-11).

 

47. OHLONE / California (37-10 in 2010)

The Renegades have lost coach Jordan Twohig (to Washington) and most of the weapons that produced a state-championship team a year ago, but Fresno State-bound RHP Matt Fontaine (6-2) and Washington-bound RHP George Asmus (4-1) both throw in excess of 90 mph and will anchor the pitching staff. Auburn-bound freshman OF Ryan Tella and sophomore C Joel Thys, a Long Beach State transfer, should play pivotal roles in the field and at the plate.

 

48. GRAYSON COUNTY / Texas (30-20 in 2010)

The Vikings won their third national title in a decade in 2008, but have struggled since to capitalize on their most recent success. LHP Steven Okert went just 2-5, 9.61 as a freshman, but may be the team’s most noteworthy returnee as his fastball was clocked at 94 mph in the fall. He has committed to Oklahoma. A significant cast of newcomers includes former Louisiana State C Wes Luquette, freshman RHP Shane Henderson and freshman LHP Zach Good. Both Henderson, a 20th-round pick of the Los Angeles Dodgers last June, and Good have also been timed at 94.

 

49. CROWDER / Missouri (43-24 in 2010)

The Roughriders reached the Junior College World Series a year ago and return a lineup that includes five Division I recruits. Missouri State-bound OF Koby Peebles (.474-6-49) is the most noteworthy offensive player, while Arkansas-Little Rock-bound RHP Chance Cleveland is expected to be a difference-maker with his 93 mph fastball in a closing role.

 

50. WESTERN OKLAHOMA (56-7 in 2010)

The Pioneers have assembled some powerhouse teams in the last three years, but always fallen short of a national title at the NJCAA Division II level. They lost eight players to pro ball off last year’s third-place team, but still have plenty of returning talent like RHP Levi Lewis (11-1, 2.53), IF Garrett Brown (.372-5-44), and OFs Eddie Cervantes (.450-10-53) and Jhomar Veras (.327-21-60, 17 SB). Among some of the more prominent newcomers are 6-foot-5 Dominican RHP Audi Disla (fastball at 90-93), and middle infielders Roberto Duran (.348-1-11 at Miami-Dade JC) and Wes Schill (.398-1-26, 48 SB).

 

EDITOR’s NOTE: Perfect Game collaborates with the National Junior College Athletic Association on a pre-season poll and in-season ranking of the nation’s top Division I teams.