On Thursday, Nebraska announced its captains heading into the 2022 season, voted on by the players. This is a practice that was brought back last year by head coach Will Bolt, himself a former captain. All four of the captains named in 2021 moved on from the program, leaving a potential void that seems to be well filled heading into the year.
In case you don’t speak Twitter handles, that means the four captains are: OF/INF Cam Chick, C Griffin Everitt, LHP Kyle Perry, and RHP Shay Schanaman.
Cam Chick has been a fixture near the top of the NU order since arriving on campus. He’s been around the top of the team leaders in doubles, home runs, and RBIs each year. Chick has also provided a ton of versatility in playing multiple positions in the field, allowing the coaches to get very creative in constructing a lineup. He is expected to play primarily in LF, but could see some time on the right side of the infield as well.
Griffin Everitt joined Nebraska in 2021 from Kansas City Kansas Community College and was the Huskers number one catcher from the get go, playing in 37 games, and starting 32. Everitt helped lead the Husker defense and pitching staff that both ranked in the top 25 for Fielding Percentage and ERA respectively, while also coming on strong himself at the end of the year offensively. Look for him to have a similar impact this year.
If you are looking for an emotional leader for the 2022 team, look no further than Kyle Perry. How important is Perry? I could throw a lot of stats at you, especially in HUGE situations, but my favorite stat about Kyle is that while he was out recovering from arm surgery, he was put on the travel roster for every away series. That’s how important he is to the team. But combine that with him coming back earlier than expected to start games that clinched the conference title for NU, clinched a series win vs conference runner up Michigan, and a win vs #1 ranked Arkansas to send the regional to a game 7.
Shay Schanaman has pitched in a multitude of roles for NU since arriving from Grand Island, and been reliable in all of them. He served as a setup man his Freshman year, mid-game stopper his Sophmore year, and moved to starter his Junior year. Shay compiled a 5-2 record in his new role with 72 strikeouts in 67.1 innings. He also led NU starters last year with a .242 batting average against. Both Schanaman and Perry will have the inside track to open as weekend starters for Nebraska, while also mentoring a lot of talented, young arms that are new to the program in 2022.
More National Rankings Released
Two more of the main College Baseball Polls were released Thursday as well, in the National College Baseball Writers Association Poll, and the USA Today Coaches Poll.
NCBWA - #25 - They do a top 35, NU is the only B1G team
USA Today Coaches Poll - unranked, at #28, if you include the “others receiving votes”
The top of each of these polls were relatively similar to previously released polls, with Texas being #1, returning by far the most experience and talent. Vanderbilt reloads its team and sits at #2. Defending national champion Miss St comes in at #3, followed by last years #1 overall seed Arkansas at #4.
No other Big Ten teams made either poll, continuing a trend in all but one of the previous polls. Husker 2022 opponents TCU and Long Beach State both show up in about the same spots they did in previous polls, with TCU showing up mostly in the mid-teens to 20, and LBSU in the mid to low 20s.
If you need a refresher on how Nebraska faired on the other 4 polls, check out the previous article from Corn Nation: Nebraska Baseball Appears in Multiple Polls.