COLLEGE BASEBALL

Hobart pitcher Brandon Barnes commits to EIU

2014-05-11T17:00:00Z 2014-05-12T01:51:06Z Hobart pitcher Brandon Barnes commits to EIUHillary Smith hillary.smith@nwi.com, (219) 933-3233 nwitimes.com

Brandon Barnes was an unknown at Hobart, even after a successful season on the football field.

Previously at Andrean, Barnes entered the Brickies baseball program with high potential and a preseason pick as a Perfect Game All-American honorable mention.

The Hobart staff set to sending video, stats and information to schools across the country.

The hard work paid off for both Barnes and the Brickies coaches when the senior pitcher committed to Eastern Illinois late Friday night.

Barnes had whittled his list to the Panthers, Ball State and a few junior colleges, he said.

"It is a pretty good coaching staff; I liked the campus when I went down and they were all really nice and treated me well," said Barnes, who plans to major in business. "The teammates that I'll have, I had a chance to speak with them, and this is a great community I'm going into."

Barnes has a 3-0 record with a 0.40 ERA with the Brickies this season. He has struck out 17 batters in 17 2/3 innings. He threw a complete-game, six-inning shutout against Kankakee Valley on April 29.

"He's done a really nice job on the mound this year," Hobart coach Bob Glover Jr. said. "He's got a strong fast ball and he's a real competitor. That's the thing you like about him, he goes out and goes right after people. Instead of getting a bad count and beating himself up, he keeps right on it."

The Panthers were 17-30-1 this season after Friday's win against Morehead State. EIU had two players selected in last season's MLB draft and has nine former players who have seen action in the majors since 1920.

"We didn't know how this (recruiting) was going to work out for him," Glover said. "Once he got out of football season, we started seeing him throw and it was clear he had some ability. We knew it was possible to get him a Division I scholarship, but the heavy recruiting is done coming into your senior year, so we were never quite sure who would have a place, the right spot and some money available. For him to get hooked up this late in the game, we're all really happy about it. I think it speaks a lot of the ability he has."

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