Kyle Davie, Correspondent
The hype has already begun for the Jacksonville State Gamecocks 2020 baseball season as their senior catcher, Alex Webb, was named to the Collegiate Baseball Preseason All-American team by Diamond Sports. Although the season has yet to start the accolades are already pouring in.
Webb has been making a name for himself over the past year and the awards have become the new normal thanks to his stellar play. Last season, Webb’s first season with the Gamecocks, Webb was named to the Ohio Valley Conference First Team as well as named the most valuable player in the OVC Tournament.
Webb was consistently dominant all season long and was a major factor in the Gamecocks sweep of the OVC regular season title. His team-leading batting average of .346 helped power the Gamecocks into first place in the conference and a 22-9 conference record. Then, his heroics over the course of three games in the conference tournament helped the Gamecocks win their fifth OVC Tournament Championship. Webb batted .429 with 5 RBIs in route to MVP honors.
Awards like this are nothing new for Webb, he has been bringing them home since high school and seems to embrace the opportunity to lead his team to victory. While in high school at Columbia Central, Webb was ranked the top catcher in all of Tennessee by Perfect Game USA. He claimed all-district honors three consecutive years, all-state honors in back-to-back years, and topped it all off with a team leading 13 home runs and a District MVP award his senior year.
The praise and glory did not come without patience and hard work as Webb played sparingly, yet still produced, his redshirt freshman year at the University of Alabama. After sitting out 2016 as a redshirt, Webb started 14 games and played in 31 games for Alabama in 2017. Even with lesser play time Webb took advantage of his opportunities and batted .328 during his time with the Crimson Tide.
Following that season, in his lone season away from Division I baseball, Webb was terrific at Chipola Junior College in Mariana, Florida. Webb was responsible for 27 runs scored, 46 hits, and 36 RBIs, with a .272 batting average and even shined on defense, catching nine base stealers. That production led to a national title for the Indians of CJC and a return to D1 baseball for Webb.
Coming off a season in which JSU won their first ever Division I Regional game the expectations and hopes are high for the Gamecocks and star players like Webb. Next month, February 14 at Rudy Abbott Field at Jim Case Stadium, will start the journey to what is hopefully another award filled, history making season as the Gamecocks will host the University of Missouri.
The Gamecocks will need Alex Webb at his best if they want to repeat the success of last season, but judging by his consistent development and knack for producing when it matters most, that won’t be too much to ask of the reigning conference MVP.