IU baseball releases recruiting class

Indiana baseball released its recruiting class on Monday. Not so much pitching in this class after they went crazy on it last year. We’ll have more on this later in the week, hopefully.

It follows:

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Indiana Baseball and Head Coach Tracy Smith bolstered their 2012 roster this week, signing nine players. The signing class includes future student-athletes from four different states, including a pair from Indiana.

The following signees will be headed to Bloomington for the 2011 Fall semester:

CHAD CLARK (West Hills, Calif., Agoura H.S.)

Clark comes to Bloomington from the West Coast, reigning from Agoura Hills, Calif. As a junior last spring for Agoura High School, Clark batted .469 (a conference high) with 18 runs batted in. On the base paths he swiped eight bags and scored 15 runs for Head Coach Mike Cordero. Clark also showcased his speed with a pair of triples during the 2010 campaign. His impressive performance was recognized by his selection to the All-CIF Division I First Team. Chad is the son of Allan and Michelle Clark.

IU COACH TRACY SMITH: “We needed to sign an athletic middle infielder in this class, and we did just that with Chad,” said Coach Smith. “He handles the bat and can steal bases. We love his athleticism in the infield. He has plenty of arm strength, and his range will allow him to play up the middle. However, what we like most about Chad is he plays with a `chip’ on his shoulder and you can’t have enough of those guys on your team.”

KYLE HART (Cincinnati, Ohio, Sycamore H.)


Hart is one of two tall, left-handed pitchers to sign with the Hoosiers last week. Last spring he hurled 60 strikeouts with a 1.98 ERA and 5-1 record for Coach Chris Shrimpton and Sycamore High School. That performance earned Hart first team All-GMC and Sycamore Pitcher of the Year honors. He logged 50 innings over the summer, posting a 2.30 ERA for the Cincy Flames. Kyle is the son of Roger and Lauri Hart; and is a National Honor Society member.

SMITH: “We can’t wait to see what kind of numbers Kyle puts up this spring. The improvements he made from his sophomore year to his junior year were huge. That’s what is so exciting about Kyle is he just keeps getting better and better every time you see him. Right now, his change-up is probably his best pitch. He will continue to develop physically, and when he does, he has a chance to be very, very good.”

RHET MONTANA (Agoura Hills, Calif., Agoura H.S.)

6’3 • 210 lbs. • 1B • R/R

Montana brings some more California flavor to IU Baseball, hailing from Agoura Hills, same high school as Chad Clark. Over the summer, Montana hit .380 with three homeruns for the Agoura Dirtbags. He has since posted a .342 batting average and two homers for the So Cal Athletics Scout Team in fall ball. Rhet is the son of Scott and Carol Montana; and is coached by Coach Mike Cordero.

SMITH: “You can’t help but notice Rhet’s size and strength. He is going to bring a power right-handed bat to our line-up. He also moves around pretty well for first base. When I watched him play he sent one into the gap and cruised into second base effortlessly. I remembered thinking, `the big boy can run too!’ Tireless worker that will push for playing time early.”

COLLIN McENERY (Orland Park, Ill., Providence Catholic H.S.)

6’2 • 190 lbs. • OF/1B/LHP• L/L

McEnery guided Providence Catholic High School to conference and regional championships in 2010, hitting .420 with three homeruns, 30 RBI and eight stolen bases. His numbers over the summer as a member of the Illinois Sparks were just as impressive, belting three homeruns and 33 RBI while batting .415. McEnery is also a weapon from the mound, evidenced by his 4-0 record and 1.80 ERA for the Sparks. His stellar performance has continued into the fall playing for Cangelosi Baseball, swinging at a .420 clip and owning a 1.90 ERA from the bump. Collin is the son of Len and Lyn McEnery; and is coached by Coach Mark Smith.

SMITH: “Collin has had success on the mound and at the plate. Ultimately his abilities will decide where he fits best with us, and it may be both as a pitcher and position player when it’s all said and done. It is always a blessing when you get someone like Collin because he does so many things well and you can use him is so many different situations. He is very athletic.”

SPENCER SAPP (Jasper, Ind., Jasper H.S.)

6’4 • 190 lbs. • LHP

Sapp is a left-handed pitcher hailing from Jasper, Ind., hometown of six-time MLB All-Star Scott Rolen. Sapp comes from the winning tradition of Coach Terry Gobert’s Jasper High baseball program. In Sapp’s three years of high school ball, the Wildcats have garnered a 78-23 record, state runner-up finish, regional and sectional championships. The southpaw’s junior season ended with the appearance in the state finals, and included a season record of 12-3 with 121 strikeouts and a 1.20 ERA. He contributed at the plate as well, batting .392 and knocking in 32 RBI. Sapp has twice been named to the All-Conference team and was an honorable mention All-State performer last season. He plays his summer and fall ball with the Evansville Razorbacks. Spencer is the son of Stan and Tammy Sapp.

SMITH: “Coach Neal is still smiling with Spencer’s decision to attend IU. Ty saw Spencer on multiple occasions in the past and has continued to remind me almost daily about how good Spencer is going to be. We compare him to a recent left-hander from our program, Matt Bashore, who was a supplemental first-round pick. We think Spencer has that type of potential.”

KYLE SCHWARBER (Middletown, Ohio, Middletown H.S.)

6’2 • 220 lbs. • C • L/R

Schwarber, a three-time Middletown High team MVP, has recorded at least 22 RBI and a .384 or higher batting average in each of his first three high school seasons. He has blasted 10 homeruns and drove in a total of 75 runs heading into his senior campaign. Last year, Schwarber was named to the first team All-GMC and All-District squads. In addition to his play on the diamond, he also excelled on the gridiron. Schwarber was a four-year letterwinner and first team All-GMC selection for football. He also gets it done in the classroom, earning GMC All-Academic awards for three years in both baseball and football. Kyle is the son of Greg and Donna Schwarber; and is coached by Coach Jason Cave.

“We know we are going to lose some `big time’ production this year when Dickerson gets drafted, but we feel we are going replace a lot of it with Kyle because of the way he swings the bat. Strength is one of his best attributes to go along with his mature approach to the game. Athletically, he moves well and shows plenty or arm strength to throw runners out. Like a lot of guys in this class, Kyle is a fierce competitor and will make an immediate impact in our program with his leadership abilities, even as a freshman.”

CHRIS SUJKA (Oak Forest, Ill., Mt. Carmel H.S.)

5’11 • 190 lbs. • OF • R/R

Sujka is a two-sport star from Mt. Carmel High School in Oak Forest, Ill., playing center field and quarterback. On the diamond, Sujka is the lead-off hitter and batted .465 with a .602 on-base percentage last season. He also led the team in walks, stolen bases and runs scored with 57 (a school record). The football team he quarterbacks is getting ready for the Class 8A Illinois state semifinal game on Saturday (Nov. 20). Sujka has flashed his athleticism with over 1,400 yards rushing and 28 rushing touchdowns thus far in 2010. He was also the Tony Lawless Award recipient, given to the Most Valuable Senior Player in the Chicago Catholic League Blue Conference. Chris is the son of Bill and Kelly Sujka.

SMITH: “Coach Neal told me I needed to see this outfielder from Illinois play. When I went to a game, it didn’t take me long to figure out whom he was talking about. Chris can really, really run, but what we love most about him is he plays the game hard all the time. Athletically, he may be one of the best in this class. I can’t wait until he concentrates fully on baseball because up to this point he has also been a standout football player. He is going to be very good for us.”

SAM TRAVIS (Orland Park, Ill., Providence Catholic H.S.)

6’1 • 185 lbs. • 3B • R/R

Travis was named Providence Catholic High’s 2010 team MVP and winner of the Silver Slugger award after batting .486 with five homeruns, 32 RBI, nine doubles and two triples on the season. He led the Celtics to both conference and regional championships. Travis was named to the first team All-Catholic League Blue. His batting average rose to .488 over the summer, playing for the Illinois Sparks. Sam is the son of John and Nadine Travis; and is coached by Coach Mark Smith.

SMITH: “In Sam, we feel we signed the best hitter in the state of Illinois. I mean no disrespect to any of the other players, but Sam really has a mature approach at the plate to go along with his tremendous bat speed. After he committed to us, professional scouts would say, `You got the Travis kid? Boy, he can really hit.’ Sam is definitely a middle of the order-type hitter with some solid defensive skills as well.”

BRANDON WIND (Indianapolis, Ind., Lawrence Central H.S.)

6’1 • 190 lbs. • C • R/R

Wind is an All-State catcher from Lawrence Central High, where he and Coach Dan Roman pushed the Bears to three consecutive conference championships. Last spring as a junior, Roman batted .500 while slugging at a .750 clip. He kept it coming over the summer, notching a .423 batting average (.615 slugging) for the Indiana Mustangs. Wind was also named an “Athlete of Character,” given to just one senior from each sport at Lawrence Central High. Brandon is the son of Jodi and Melinda Wind.

SMITH: “We had a chance to see Brandon a lot in the past couple years as he caught some of Indiana’s top pitching talent on his high school team. Because of that, there is no doubt he can handle `good pitching’. He is one of the better defensive catchers we saw last year and has an athletic frame that is going really fill out over the next couple years. Brandon is very talented player with a tremendous upside.”


  1. Fewer people come to Indiana baseball these days in hopes that they will get to improve themselves by practicing with the Hoosiers’ basketball team, as was the case not long ago. But that’s because competition has gotten tougher, baby! Witness the new face of Hoosier basketball program. (It usually isn’t available before half time, though.)

  2. Sounds like a solid class for the Hoosiers. Seems like the baseball team’s been getting better and better. Can’t help but improve the athletic department as a whole.

  3. Smith has really turned it around as far as recruiting goes, I will admit. As far as recruiting goes. The 2010 class was a step backwards, but he has turned it around.

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