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Huskie pitcher Eli Anderson named semifinalist for Gregg Olson Award, 2013’s ‘breakout player’

May 28, 2013
Eli Anderson

Eli Anderson

Northern Illinois pitcher Eli Anderson (Glenview, Ill./New Trier) was selected as a semifinalist for College Baseball Lineup’s Gregg Olson Award, presented by Toolshed Sports.

The award is given to the “Breakout Player of the Year” in Division I college baseball. Anderson is one of 46 players on the list and one of only two from the MAC. This is the inaugural year of the Gregg Olson Award.

Anderson was a midweek spot reliever for the Huskies as a freshman with a 9.53, before stepping into a midweek starter’s role in 2012 and finishing the season with a 6.79 ERA and a 2-2 record.

This season he proved to be one of the top-starting pitchers in the Midwest as he finished with a 9-4 record, a 2.18 ERA, six complete games, a shutout, a combined shutout, 76 strikeouts and 26 walks in 115.1 innings pitched. Opponents hit a mere .244 on Anderson in 15 starts this season.

In Mid-American Conference play, Anderson finished 8-1 with a 1.17 ERA, six complete games and a 0.98 WHIP to earn eight-consecutive wins in conference play. He pitched 77 innings in the MAC of a possible 81 in 2013 while also striking out 54 and walking 14.

Anderson closed the season as a first-team, All-Mid-American Conference selection, the first Northern Illinois starting pitcher to earn the honor since 2004. He tied the NIU all-time mark of wins in a season May 10 versus Eastern Michigan with a 2-1 victory over the Eagles, hurling 8.0 innings with eight strikeouts, two walks and only one run surrendered.

Gregg Olson Award logoBall State pitcher Scott Baker joins Anderson on the list.

The award is named after former Auburn Tiger star pitcher Gregg Olson, who became one of the top collegiate players in the nation after an initial season filled with only mixed success. Olson went on to become a two-time All-American, first round draft pick, American League Rookie of the Year and MLB All-Star. Like Olson, these players have elevated their game to an elite level and, in many instances, their teams have mirrored their success as a direct result.

Initial nominations were made by sports information/media contacts, and the semifinalists were determined by made by an independent panel. A list of finalists is scheduled to be announced Monday, June 3, in conjunction with the conclusion of NCAA regional play.

The winner of the 2013 Gregg Olson Award will be named in Omaha, Neb., during the College World Series, which begins Saturday, June 15, at  TD Ameritrade Park.

For more information on NIU baseball and Huskie athletics, visit www.niuhuskies.com.