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Texas Freshman Closer Gets Call One More Time, As Stopper Of The Year

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The good times keep on rollin’ for the Texas Longhorn pitching staff. This time the spotlight shines on standout Texas relief pitcher Corey Knebel, who has been named the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association’s Stopper of the Year.

Knebel, a freshman right-hander, set the Texas freshman record with 19 saves in relief, the most of any pitcher in the country this season. The Longhorn closer was 3-2 with a 1.13 earned run average in 55 2/3 innings of work. He made 38 relief appearances, the most in the Big 12 this season.

The Texas freshman was an All-Big 12 first-team selection and a unanimous selection to the conference’s All-Freshman Team. His national honors include first-team All-America and Freshman Pitcher of the Year selections by Collegiate Baseball, and he is among 25 quarterfinalists for the College Baseball Foundation’s Pitcher of the Year award.

Knebel won out over more than 50 of the country’s top collegiate relief pitchers. He is the second straight Texas Longhorn to receive the honor in as many years and the fourth Big 12 relief specialist overall. Chance Ruffin of Texas won the award in 2010. Another former Texas reliever was the first recipient of the NCBWA’s Stopper of the Year award in 2005. Don Cryz of Kansas won the award the following year, in 2006.