National Collegiate Baseball Writers March 16, 2004
For Immediate Release
Contact: Michael Montoro
Russum throws first USM no-hitter since Ray Guy

CHICAGO (NCBWA) – The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) released its National Hitter and Pitcher of the Week awards for the period ending March 14.

Birmingham-Southern’s senior 1B/3B/RHP Connor Robertson has been named National Hitter of the Week, while Southern Miss’ junior RHP Cliff Russum was named National Pitcher of the Week. The NCBWA Board reviews candidates from each Division I Conference each week and names winners each Tuesday throughout the season.

Robertson batted .647 (11-for-17) with four HR, 13 RBI, two doubles, a triple, three stolen bases and scored eight runs in four games last week. He also recorded a win and a save in a combined 2.1 innings of relief pitching. He posted a slugging percentage of 1.588. In a three-game series versus Austin Peay, Robertson hit .750 (9-for-12) with 4 HR, 10 RBI, eight runs scored, and a slugging pct. of 1.917. In 2.1 innings on the mound this week, the Tuscaloosa, Ala., native allowed no runs, a hit, and struck out three while earning a win over Toledo and a save in Saturday's 7-6 win over Austin Peay.

Russum threw the first nine-inning no-hitter in Conference USA history on Saturday against Eastern Illinois. He struck out a career-high 15 batters and walked just three. The Hattiesburg, Miss., native retired 13 consecutive batters from the third inning through one out in the seventh. After giving up a walk in the seventh inning, he closed out the game by retiring the final eight batters. It was the sixth no-hitter in Southern Miss history, and the first nine-inning no-hitter since former Oakland Raider all-pro punter Ray Guy accomplished the feat in 1972.

Founded in 1962, the NCBWA is dedicated to the advancement of college baseball. Membership is open to writers, broadcasters and publicists of the sport. Members receive a membership card, directory, newsletter updates and official votes in the Howser Award Player of the Year, Regional Player of the Year and NCBWA All-America voting. The NCBWA also sponsors preseason All-American awards, publication and writing contests.

2004 NCBWA Division I Players of the Week:
Feb. 10: Josh Brady, Texas Tech (Hitter); Jered Weaver, Long Beach State (Pitcher)
Feb. 17: Seth Johnston, Texas (Hitter); David Purcey, Oklahoma (Pitcher)
Feb. 24: Brian Bixley, Eastern Michigan (Hitter); Adam Gold, California and Jason Urquidez, Arizona State (Pitcher)
March 2: Sean Gaston, Notre Dame and Jed Lowrie, Stanford (Hitter); Derek Duclos, Richmond and Derek Hankins, Memphis (Pitcher)
March 9: Ryan Frith, Southern Miss and Stephen Head, Ole Miss (Hitter); Clay Dirks, LSU and Jim Ripley, Kansas State (Pitcher)
March 16: Connor Robertson, Birmingham-Southern (Hitter); Cliff Russum, Southern Miss (Pitcher)
March 23: Jonathan Batts, UNC Wilmington and Rielly Embrey, San Diego State (Hitter); Jarame Beaupre, Delaware and Matt Daley, Bucknell (Pitcher)
March 30: Warner Jones, Vanderbilt (Hitter); Steve Grasley, Creighton and Jered Weaver, Long Beach State (Pitcher)
April 6: Grant Richardson, Washington State (Hitter); Dennis Bigley, Oral Roberts (Pitcher)
April 13: Brad Corley, Mississippi State (Hitter); Brian Bogusevic, Tulane (Pitcher)
April 20: Todd Kimling, Eastern Michigan and Daniel Stovall, New Mexico (Hitter); Tim Layden, Duke and J.P. Howell, Texas (Pitcher)
April 27: Nic Crosta, Santa Clara and Richard Gianotto, Miami (Hitter); Matt Campbell, South Carolina and Zack Zuercher, Rhode Island (Pitcher)
May 4: Brian Hall, Stanford and Kurt Suzuki, Cal State Fullerton (Hitter); Zac Cline, West Virginia and Arik Hempy, South Carolina (Pitcher)
May 11: Justin Holmes, Georgia and Lee McLean, UNC Wilmington (Hitter); Tim Lincecum, Washington and Jered Weaver, Long Beach State (Pitcher)
May 18: Steve Cavarati, Ohio State and Eric Nielsen, UNLV (Hitter); Mike Rogers and Vern Sterry, N.C. State (Pitcher)
May 25: Josh Ford, Baylor and Andy Hudak, Bowling Green (Hitter); Greg Bunn, East Carolina and Jason Windsor, Cal State Fullerton (Pitcher)