Walker to be Inducted into Omaha HOF Sunday

June 29, 2016

OMAHA, Neb. Three of the greatest players and one of the greatest coaches ever to participate in the College World Series will be inducted into the Omaha College Baseball Hall of Fame July 3 in Omaha, Neb.

Todd Walker (LSU), Barry Bonds (Arizona State), Ron Fraser (Miami coach) and Keith Moreland (Texas) and comprise the Omaha College Baseball Hall of Fame Class of 2016. These four individuals will be recognized in front of fans at the TD Ameritrade College Home Run Derby at TD Ameritrade Park Omaha on July 3. The players will be featured in ESPN2’s live broadcast of the TD Ameritrade College Home Run Derby, which begins at 7:30 p.m. CDT.

Established in 2013 to celebrate college baseball’s rich history, the Omaha College Baseball Hall of Fame honors the game’s legends that have made their mark in Omaha. Inductees were selected because of their outstanding contributions to college baseball, specifically through extraordinary performance on the game’s grandest stage: in Omaha. Finalists and winners were selected by a committee of former college baseball players and coaches as well as members of the media. 

Although still in its infancy, The Omaha College Baseball Hall of Fame already has a prestigious history of inductees. The inaugural class included Rod Dedeaux (USC coach), Augie Garrido (Texas coach), Bob Horner (Arizona State), Brooks Kieschnick (Texas), Robin Ventura (Oklahoma State) and Dave Winfield (Minnesota). The last two classes have included Cliff Gustafson (Texas coach), Dustin Ackley (North Carolina), Steve Arlin (Ohio State), Sal Bando (Arizona State), Will Clark (Mississippi State), Burt Hooton (Texas) and Mark Kotsay (Cal State Fullerton).

Todd Walker

One of the greatest players in LSU baseball history, Todd Walker played second base for the Tigers from 1992 to 1994 and was a two-time first-team All-American and two-time member of the College World Series All-Tournament team (1993, 1994). He led LSU to the National Championship as a sophomore in 1993 and was named Most Outstanding Player at the College World Series for the National Champion Tigers, batting .350 (7-for-20) with three homers and 12 RBIs during the CWS. He helped guide the Tigers back to the CWS for the second consecutive year in 1994 and batted .714 (5-for-7) in LSU’s two CWS games with one homer, one double, two runs and three RBIs, including a solo blast that gave him four career CWS homers, tying five other players for the all-time Series record, at the time. Walker closed out his brilliant LSU career as the SEC all-time leader in hits (310), RBIs (246), runs scored (234) and total bases (557). In 2010, he was selected to the College World Series Legends Team. The No. 8 overall selection in the 1994 Major League Baseball Draft batted .289 in 1,288 career MLB games over 12 seasons (1996-2007) with 1,316 hits, 107 home runs and 545 RBIs. Walker eclipsed the .300 mark twice (posting a career-best .316 in 1998 with Minnesota and hitting .305 with the Chicago Cubs in 2005) and batted .280 or better seven times.

Barry Bonds

Barry Bonds hit .347 with 45 home runs and 175 runs batted in during his three years at Arizona State and was selected as All-American in 1985 and All-Conference in 1984 and 1985. He played in the College World Series in 1983 and 1984 and was selected a member of the CWS All-Tournament team both years, hitting .438 with two homers, 10 RBIs and three stolen bases in eight career CWS games. Bonds tied the NCAA record with seven consecutive hits in the College World Series as a sophomore. He was named to the College World Series Legends Team in 2010. On March 19, 1993 Bonds’ No. 24 was retired by ASU. The Pittsburgh Pirates drafted him as the sixth overall pick of the 1985 Major League Baseball Draft and he went on to have one of the most prolific careers in MLB history with the Pittsburgh Pirates and San Francisco Giants. The seven-time National League MVP, 14-time All-Star and eight-time Gold Glove winner holds many MLB hitting records, including most career home runs (762), most home runs in a single season (73, set in 2001) and most career walks (2,558).

Ron Fraser

Coach Ron Fraser transformed the University of Miami’s baseball program from an afterthought to a national power during a career spanning 30 years, including NCAA national titles in 1982 and 1985. He left the coaching ranks as the second winningest all-time coach with a record of 1,271-438-9 (.747) from 1963 through 1992 and never had a losing season. His Miami teams made eight trips to the College World Series and set a NCAA record with 20 consecutive playoff appearances. Fraser earned the nickname “The Wizard of College Baseball” for his innovative marketing ideas that helped spark a surge in the college game’s popularity. He was named the NCAA coach of the year three times and coached numerous national teams, including the 1992 United States Olympic team. He coached his final game at Miami’s Mark Light Field on May 25, 1992 — a 5-1 victory over Notre Dame that propelled the Hurricanes to the College World Series.

Keith Moreland

Keith Moreland was a three-time first-team All-Southwest Conference performer as a third baseman at the University of Texas, and twice named first-team All-American (1973, 1975). His bat helped lead the Longhorns to the College World Series for three consecutive years, including 1973, when he batted .471 (8-17) and was named to the CWS All-Tournament team, and 1975, when he hit .410 and Texas won the national title. In 13 CWS games, Moreland hit .404 with two home runs and18 RBIs. He has the fourth most hits in CWS history with 23 in three years, which earned him a spot on the College World Series All-Decade Team of the 1970s. During his three years with Texas, Moreland put together amazing numbers, including 274 hits, 183 RBIs, 53 doubles and a combined .388 batting average. His teams went a combined 160-21 in his three seasons. In 2010, his Longhorn No. 3 jersey was retired. He was drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies in the seventh round of the 1975 MLB Draft and went on to enjoy a successful 12-year MLB career from 1978-89, playing for five different teams as an outfielder, catcher and infielder. In 1985 with the Cubs, he batted .307 with 14 home runs and 106 RBIs, and in 1987 he had 27 home runs with 88 RBIs.

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