Feb. 5, 2013

CBI Big Ten preview

Big Ten Preseason Coaches' Poll


Inside: With Indiana's Sam Travis

By Phil Stanton

CollegeBaseballInsider.com Co-Founder

phil@collegebaseballinsider.com  @RoadToOmaha


Sam Travis (left) is a sophomore infielder from Orland, Park, Ill. He was named Big Ten Freshman of the Year in 2012 and was a Freshman All-American. Travis batted .319 in 60 games with 17 doubles, nine homers, 41 runs and 50 RBI. He posted a slugging percentage of .509 and on-base percentage of .397.


A 40th-round draft pick of the Cincinnati Reds in 2011, Travis had a strong start to his rookie campaign. He reached base in each of his first 30 games and had a 17-game hit streak.


The Hoosiers finished second in the Big Ten with a 14-7 conference mark and reached the championship game of the 2012 Big Ten Tournament. IU topped #5 Michigan State 6-4 in its first game before falling to top-seeded Purdue 3-0. The Hoosiers pulled out a thrilling 4-3 win in 11 innings over the Spartans before dropping a gut-wrenching 6-5 decision to the Boilermakers in the title game.


Travis is one of the top returning hitters in the Big Ten this season.


1. What was the biggest factor in your decision not to enter professional baseball out of high school and attend Indiana?

To mature as a player and to come get a great education at a Big Ten institution.


2. Why did the transition from high school to college baseball seem to come easy for you?

It definitely wasn’t easy, a lot of hard work. You put in a lot more hours in college ball. All the hard work has happened to pay off so far.


3. What were the keys to your successful season at the plate in 2012?

Not taking myself out of an at-bat, not swinging at bad pitches. Just being patient and swinging on my pitch.


4. What was the Big Ten Tournament experience like for you and your teammates?

Unbelievable. Can’t wait to get back. Looking forward to big things this season and hope to back there with a better outcome.


5. What must the Hoosiers do to win a Big Ten title in 2013?

We have to stay confident. Play our game. Can never go back on our heels. Always have to be ready for shots coming at us.


(photos courtesy of IU Media Relations Office)