Positively Promoting the Student Athlete Since 1992

ROSEMONT, Ill. — University of Michigan junior outfielder Jordan Brewer was named the Big Ten Conference Player of the Year, while the Wolverines garnered nine team selections as the conference announced its 2019 award recipients Tuesday afternoon (May 21).

Brewer earned Player of the Year honors after he led the Big Ten in batting average (.358), was second in slugging percentage (.637), runs batted in (52), hits (69) and stolen bases (19), while finishing third in runs (51) and doubles (14), fifth in home runs (12) and ninth in on-base-percentage (.415).

Brewer, a St. Joseph, Michigan, native was joined on the All-Big Ten first team by sophomore designated hitter Jordan Nwogu and sophomore pitcher Jeff Criswell. Sophomore shortstop Jack Blomgren earned All-Big Ten second team honors while sophomore catcher Joe Donovan, senior first baseman Jimmy Kerr, sophomore outfielder Jesse Franklinand junior pitcher Karl Kauffmann all earned third team honors. Closer Willie Weiss was named to the All-Big Ten freshman team and Kerr was further honored as Michigan’s Sportsmanship Award recipient.

Nwogu has had an exceptional sophomore campaign on the heels of his 2018 Freshman All-America season. The Ann Arbor, Michigan, native asserted himself as one of the country’s most feared leadoff hitters with a .343 batting average and a .465 on-base percentage while connecting on nine home runs and 23 extra-base hits in all for a .605 slugging percentage. Nwogu leads the Big Ten in OBP and ranks in the top four in batting average and slugging percentage. He also ranked second on the team with 14 steals (16 attempts) and drove in 34 runs.

Criswell rode a fastball that ranged between 94-97 mph this season to first-team honors thanks to a stellar showing during league play. The Portage, Michigan, native led all pitchers with a 1.49 ERA in Big Ten games while limiting opposing batters to a .190 batting average. All told, Criswell sported a 6-1 record and led Michigan’s starters with a 2.65 ERA; he struck out 77 batters in 74.2 innings pitched while allowing 59 hits.

Blomgren paired his exceptional defense at shortstop with a .314 batting average and .418 on-base percentage while starting all 54 games. A solo home run in the seventh inning of the Wolverines’ final regular-season victory at Nebraska on Friday (May 17) allowed Blomgren to extend his reached-base streak to 33 games this season.

Kauffmann started the season as Michigan’s Saturday starter before being moved to Friday in early April. The Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, native responded with an impressive 2.91 ERA and a team-leading 89.2 innings pitched while sporting an 8-5 record. Kauffmann struck out 83 batters and held batters to a .227 batting average.

Donovan started 42 games at catcher and contributed a .267 batting average with 15 extra-base hits, including six homers to go with 29 RBI. He also threw out 10 of the 26 runners attempting to steal this season.

Kerr had a breakout season in the middle of Michigan’s lineup. The Scottsdale, Arizona, native and third-generation U-M baseball player batted .292 in conference games and .262 overall with eight homers, 12 doubles and 43 RBI.

Franklin remains one of Michigan’s most dangerous hitters – a fact born-out by his league-leading 40 walks. The sophomore center fielder is among the league leaders in home runs (12), doubles (11), slugging percentage (.500) and on-base percentage (.387) despite an uncharacteristic .247 batting average.

Weiss, the 2018 Oregon Gatorade Player of the Year, made an immediate impact as U-M’s closer this season with 21 appearances out of the bullpen. With a save in a win at Maryland on May 3, Weiss clinched his ninth save of the year and ranks third all-time for saves in a single season. Weiss also posted a 2-2 record with a 3.15 ERA on the strength of 43 strikeouts and 24 hits allowed in 34.1 innings. He was even more impressive in conference play, where he struck out 24 batters in just 14.1 innings of work with a 2.51 ERA.

In the other specialty awards, Indiana’s Andrew Saalfrank was named Pitcher of the Year, Maryland’s Maxwell Costes was named Freshman of the Year and Indiana’s Jeff Mercer the league’s Coach of the Year.

No 2 seed Michigan will open Big Ten Tournament play on Wednesday (May 22) against No. 7 seed Ohio State. First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m. CDT at TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha, Nebraska.

2019 Big Ten Awards

Player of the Year
Jordan Brewer, Michigan

Pitcher of the Year
Andrew Saalfrank, Indiana

Freshman of the Year
Maxwell Costes, Maryland

Coach of the Year
Jeff Mercer, Indiana

All-Big Ten First Team
C – Eli Wilson, Minnesota
1B – Maxwell Costes, Maryland
2B – Michael Massey, Illinois
SS – Jack Dunn, Northwestern
3B – Alex Erro, Northwestern
OF – Zac Taylor, Illinois
OF – Jordan Brewer, Michigan
OF – Dominic Canzone, Ohio State
SP – Andy Fisher, Illinois
SP – Andrew Saalfrank, Indiana
SP – Jeff Criswell, Michigan
RP – Garrett Acton, Illinois
DH – Jordan Nwogu, Michigan
At-Large – Matt Lloyd, Indiana

All-Big Ten Second Team
C – Dillon Dingler, Ohio State
1B – Scotty Bradley, Indiana
2B – Royce Ando, Michigan State
SS – Jack Blomgren, Michigan
3B – Cole Barr, Indiana
OF – Randy Bednar, Maryland
OF – Matt Gorski, Indiana
OF – Aaron Palensky, Nebraska
SP – Max Meyer, Minnesota
SP – Dante Biasi, Penn State
SP – Tevin Murray, Rutgers
RP – Grant Leonard, Iowa
DH – Cam Chick, Nebraska
At-Large – Brady Cherry, Ohio State

All-Big Ten Third Team
C – Joe Donovan, Michigan
1B – Jimmy Kerr, Michigan
2B – Shawn Goosenberg, Northwestern
SS – AJ Lee, Maryland
3B – Taylor Wright, Maryland
OF – Jack Yalowitz, Illinois
OF – Elijah Dunham, Indiana
OF – Jesse Franklin, Michigan
SP – Hunter Parsons, Maryland
SP – Karl Kauffmann, Michigan
SP – Seth Lonsway, Ohio State
RP – Bo Hofstra, Purdue
DH – Michael Pineiro, Maryland
At-Large – Cole McKenzie, Purdue

All-Big Ten Freshman Team
C – Michael Trautwein, Northwestern
1B – Maxwell Costes, Maryland
2B – Shawn Goosenberg, Northwestern
SS – Zach Dezenzo, Ohio State
3B – Justin Williams, Penn State
OF – Cam McDonald, Illinois
OF – Grant Richardson, Indiana
OF – Zaid Walker, Michigan State
SP – Michael Doherty, Northwestern
SP – Garrett Burhenn, Ohio State
SP – Seth Lonsway, Ohio State
RP – Willie Weiss, Michigan
DH – Cam Chick, Nebraska
At-Large – Michael Pineiro, Maryland

Sportsmanship Award Honorees
David Craan, Illinois
Drew Ashley, Indiana
Mitchell Boe, Iowa
Taylor Wright, Maryland
Jimmy Kerr, Michigan
Marty Bechina, Michigan State
Jeff Fasching, Minnesota
Joe Acker, Nebraska
Danny Katz, Northwestern
Ridge Winand, Ohio State
Blake Hodgens, Penn State
Bryce Bonner, Purdue
Tyler McNamara, Rutgers