NCBWA names semifinalists for 2024 Dick Howser Trophy presented by The Game Headwear

DALLAS (NCBWA) – The Dick Howser Trophy Committee, in conjunction with the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association, has denoted the list of semifinalists for the 2024 Dick Howser Trophy presented by The Game Headwear. The prestigious award in college baseball is given to the top player based on two rounds of national voting by NCBWA members.

This is the 37th year of the Dick Howser Trophy (first presented in 1987 to Mike Fiore of Miami and not awarded in 2020 due to COVID-19 suspension of the season). Finalists will be announced on Thursday, June 8.

The ‘24 award will be presented at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, the home of the College World Series, for the 12th year. The winner also will be unveiled on MLB Network on Thursday, June 13, in the 9 a.m. (CDT) highlight show hour. A Friday, June 14, news conference with the winner will be held at 10 a.m., the opening day just prior to the first game of the 77th NCAA College World Series, in the Schwab Stadium Media Room.

This year’s 68 candidates come from 18 different conferences and 48 different schools. The Southeastern Conferences leads with 16 semifinalists with the Atlantic Coast having 13, Conference USA with six, Pac-12 with five, Big 12 and West Coast Conference with four apiece, Big West, Conference USA, Southern and Sun Belt with three, the American Athletic, Western Athletic and Ohio Valley with two and the Atlantic-10, CAA, Southland and SWAC with one.

Texas A&M and Wake Forest each had four semifinalists, while Tennessee and Florida State had three standouts listed. All nine positions on the field are included with 13 outfielders, six first basemen, eight third basemen, five catchers, five second basemen, five shortstops, two designated hitters, three utility players, 13 starting pitchers and eight relief pitchers. The NCBWA Stopper of the Year Award for top relief pitcher also will be presented on June 14 as well as the NCBWA Division I Coach of the Year.

The Dick Howser Trophy, presented by The Game Headwear, is given in memory of the former Florida State University All-America shortstop and major league player and manager who died of brain cancer in 1987. The trophy is regarded as baseball's most prestigious award. Criteria for consideration of the trophy include performance on the field, leadership, moral character and courage – all qualities that were exemplified by Dick Howser's life.

A Florida native, Howser was twice an All-America shortstop at FSU (1957-58), then coached the Seminoles in 1979, after a career as a major league player and coach. After one year coaching in the college ranks, Howser returned to the majors to manage the New York Yankees and Kansas City Royals and won the World Series with the Royals in 1985. The baseball stadium on the Florida State campus is named for Howser.

“The Dick Howser Trophy was founded shortly after his death by a few friends of Dick’s in the St. Petersburg Area who played, coached and worked with him,” David Feaster, chairman of the Howser Trophy Committee said. “All knew him and were aware of him as a tremendous player, coach and friend. The award was initially awarded at the Governor’s Baseball Dinner held each spring in St. Petersburg to welcome spring training to Florida, and as time progressed, we moved the presentation to Omaha (in 1992), the center of college baseball, during the World Series. I have been involved with the award for more than 30 years and have loved every minute of my involvement. I have had the opportunity to meet some great college players as well as some great young men. I am so proud of the character quality we have in our award, which makes it unique. I am also proud of our selection process by the NCBWA which is the most democratic of any award and provides a true national scope.

“The Dick Howser Trophy is 37 years old and continues to increase in prominence and the scope of its reach increases exponentially each year,” Feaster added. “It is a true testimony to Dick Howser’s ability as a player, coach and gentlemen. I am proud to be associated with it.”

The winner's name is inscribed on the permanent trophy - a bronze bust of Howser displayed often at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg - home of the Tampa Bay Rays – an in various national locales. The winner and his school receive a special trophy to keep.

NCBWA voting membership includes writers, broadcasters and publicists. Designed to promote and publicize college baseball, it is the sport's only college media-related organization, founded in 1962.

Christian Almanza, 1B, Saint Mary’sCaden Kendle, OF, UC Irvine
Edgar Alvarez, 1B, NichollsSeaver King, 2B, Wake Forest
Billy Amick, 3B, TennesseeJosh Kuroda-Grauer, SS, Rutgers
John Anderson, 2B, SamfordNick Kurtz, 1B, Wake Forest
Jamie Arnold, SP, Florida StateAlec Makarewicz, 3B, NC State
Evan Aschenbek, RP, Texas A&MT.J. McCants, OF, Alabama
Ethan Bates, RP, Louisiana TechCole McConell, OF, Louisiana Tech
Travis Bazzana, 2B, Oregon StateLiam McFadden-Ackman, 1B, Northern Kentucky
Chris Beilenson, RP, DukeLP Langevin, RP, Louisiana
Carson Benge, UTIL, Oklahoma StateJace LaViolette, OF, Texas A&M
Brooks Bryan, C, TroyCaleb Lomavita, C, California
Chase Burns, SP, Wake ForestIzaak Martinez, RP, UC San Diego
Mason Burns, RP, Western KentuckyMatthew Matthjis, SP, North Carolina
Drew Burress, OF, Georgia TechLyle Miller-Green, OF, Austin Peay
Blake Burke, 1B, TennesseeBen Miller, 3B, Duke
Ryan Campos, C, Arizona StateGage Miller, 3B, Alabama
Jac Caglianone, UTIL, FloridaBraden Montgomery, OF, Texas A&M
Jakob Christian, OF, San DiegoChristian Moore, 2B, Tennessee
Charlie Condon, 3B, GeorgiaRyan Prager, SP, Texas A&M
Caleb Cozart, DH, UNC GreensboroJake Reinisch, DH, Wake Forest
Carter Cunningham, 1B, East CarolinaMichael Ross, SP, Samford
Kyle DeBarge, SS, LouisianaBrett Sears, SP, Nebraska
Edwin DeLaCruz, C, Arkansas-Pine BluffAustin Smith, UTIL, San Diego
Daniel Dickinson, 2B, Utah ValleyCam Smith, 3B, Florida State
Jalin Flores, SS, TexasHagen Smith, SP, Arkansas
Carter Gaston, SP, PortlandJames Tibbs III, OF, Florida State
Lawson Harrill, OF, CampbellPayton Tolle, SP, TCU
Luke Holman, SP, LSUJJ Wetherholt, SS, West Virginia
Bridger Holmes, RP, Oregon StateMason White, SS, Arizona
Vance Honeycutt, OF, North CarolinaTommy White, 3B, LSU
Walter Janek, C, Sam HoustonNick Wissman, RP, Dayton
Ryan Johnson, SP, DBUJakob Wright, SP, Cal Poly
Dakota Jordan, OF, Mississippi StateBlake Wright, 3B, Clemson
Keith Jones, OF, New Mexico StateTrey Yesavage, SP, East Carolina

The Howser Trophy was created in 1987, shortly after Howser's death. Previous winners of the Howser Trophy are Mike Fiore, Miami, 1987; Robin Ventura, Oklahoma State, 1988; Scott Bryant, Texas, 1989; Alex Fernandez, Miami-Dade Community College South, 1990; Frank Rodriguez, Howard College (Texas), 1991; Brooks Kieschnick, Texas, 1992 and 1993; Jason Varitek, Georgia Tech, 1994; Todd Helton, Tennessee, 1995; Kris Benson, Clemson, 1996; J. D. Drew, Florida State, 1997; Eddy Furniss, LSU, 1998; Jason Jennings, Baylor, 1999; Mark Teixeira, Georgia Tech, 2000; Mark Prior, P, USC, 2001, Khalil Greene, SS, Clemson, 2002; Rickie Weeks, 2B, Southern U., 2003; Jered Weaver, P, Long Beach State, 2004; Alex Gordon, 3B, Nebraska, 2005; Brad Lincoln, P/DH, Houston, 2006; David Price, P, Vanderbilt, 2007; Buster Posey, C, Florida State, 2008; Stephen Strasburg, P, San Diego State, 2009; Anthony Rendon, 3B, Rice, 2010; Taylor Jungmann, P, Texas, 2011; Mike Zunino, C, Florida, 2012; Kris Bryant, 3B, San Diego, 2013; A.J. Reed, P/1B, Kentucky, 2014; Andrew Benintendi, OF, Arkansas, 2015; Seth Beer, OF, Clemson, 2016, Brendan McKay, P/1B, Louisville, 2017, Brady Singer, SP, Florida, 2018, Adley Rutschman, C, Oregon State 2019; Kevin Kopps, RP, Arkansas, 2021; Ivan Melendez, 1B, Texas, 2022 and Paul Skenes, P, LSU, 2023.