Appalachian State University’s Daniel Kassouf (Lexington, N.C./North Davidson) received another first-team all-America honor on Wednesday when the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) bestowed Appalachian’s
senior designated hitter with the recognition. Kassouf, just Appalachian State’s second first-team all-American since the Mountaineers joined the NCAA Division I ranks in 1972, was also tabbed as a first-team honoree by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association last week. He joins Randy Ingle (1979) as Appalachian’s only first-team all-Americans since it joined to the NCAA Division I ranks in 1972. Overall, he is the 15th all-American in program history and the 10th in the school’s NCAA era.
Kassouf was one of the nation’s top power hitters in 2012, ranking 10th nationally with a school-record 17 home runs, 11th with a Southern Conference-leading 66 RBI and 16th with 148 total bases. He also finished with a gaudy .339 batting average and made a serious run at the SoCon triple crown, leading the league in all three triple-crown categories (batting average, home runs and RBI) as late as April 21. Spread out over the course of a 162-game Major League Baseball season, Kassouf’s power numbers would translate to 47 home runs and 181 RBI.
The all-America recognition highlights a long list of postseason accolades for the 6-1, 230-pound senior. Earlier this month, Kassouf became the first SoCon Player ever selected by the NCBWA as its District IV Player of the Year, honoring the best player in Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. He was also one of 35 semifinalists for the NCBWA’s Dick Howser Trophy (National Player of the Year), one of 30 semifinalists for the Golden Spikes Award (USA Baseball’s top amateur player) and a first-team all-conference honoree by the SoCon’s coaches and media.
The ABCA also announced its all-region teams on Wednesday with four Mountaineers receiving all-Atlantic Region recognition. Kassouf was a first-team honoree while starting pitcher Ryan Arrowood (Rutherfordton, N.C./R-S Central), shortstop Will Callaway (Greenville, S.C./Eastside) and outfielder Tyler Tewell (Charlotte, N.C./Butler) earned second-team plaudits.
The 2012 Southern Conference Pitcher of the Year, Arrowood went 11-0 with a 3.81 ERA in 2012 and was one of only two pitchers nationally with at least nine wins and no losses this season (joining NC State’s Carlos Rodon, who was 9-0). Arrowood went 28-8 during his collegiate career, setting school records for career victories and strikeouts (252) and also set a new single-season program record with 93 strikeouts in 2012. He was selected in the 28th round of this month’s Major League Baseball Draft by the Colorado Rockies and is currently a member of the class-A Tri-City Dust Devils.
Callaway was one of 25 semifinalists for the 2012 Brooks Wallace Award, given to the nation’s top shortstop, and a unanimous first-team all-Southern Conference selection by the league’s coaches and media. He hit .320 with 12 doubles and four home runs as a junior and ranked among the national leaders with 53 RBI (65th), 54 runs (87th), 23 stolen bases (51st) and six sacrifice flies (55th). He will be back as a senior in 2013 to help the Mountaineers try to defend their Southern Conference championship and make back-to-back NCAA postseason appearances for the first time in school history.
Tewell made the most of his only season as a full-time collegiate starter in 2012, finishing third in the SoCon with a .357 batting average to go along with 79 hits, 17 doubles and four triples (all team highs), six home runs and 45 RBI. He just missed being one of the nation’s top-100 hitters in 2012, finishing 101st in batting, and also ranked among the NCAA Division I leaders in slugging percentage (.552 - 111th) and doubles (17 - 122nd). He was picked by the Atlanta Braves in the 14th round of the 2012 MLB Draft and is currently a member of the rookie-level Danville Braves.
The four all-region selections match the 34-year-old school record set originally when Ingle, Ron Brower, Joey Moffitt and Chris Plemmons earned the recognition in 1978.
Photo Courtesy: Daniel Kassouf, ASU Athletics