Nov. 9, 2011
HOUSTON - University of Houston head baseball coach Todd Whitting announced the signing of seven student-athletes to National Letters of Intent on Thursday. Whitting's second signing class includes three pitchers, three infielders and a catcher.
"For the second straight year, we have landed a solid class of student-athletes who will not only excel on the field but in the classroom," Whitting said. "My hopes are that this second recruiting class will help to continue to stabilize the program to become a consistent contender on a national level year in and year out."
Coach (Trip) Couch and Coach (Jack) Cressend are tireless recruiters who have done a tremendous job of loading this program with great student-athletes. They have both done an outstanding job of identifying and signing some of the best athletes in the country to be a part of Cougar Baseball. Our entire staff is looking forward to welcoming all of these families into the program next fall."
Here is a look at each member of the 2012 signing class and recruiting coordinator Trip Couch's thoughts on each player.
JACOB CAMPBELL - C - ALVIN, TEXAS - ALVIN HIGH SCHOOL
"Jacob is a blue collar, get-after-you type of player. His motor runs high, and he has a chance to be offensive as well as being a strong catch-and-throw guy. Jacob is coached in high school by longtime coach Mike Rodgers and also plays for the Columbia Angels in the summer. He is a tough kid that really likes to play."
DUSTIN COOK - RHP - HUFFMAN, TEXAS - HARGRAVE HIGH SCHOOL
"Dustin is a big, strong, physical kid with a great arm. He missed most of last year with Tommy John surgery but will be full speed once the spring season starts."
Prior to his injury, he played for the nationally known Marucci baseball team and was an integral part of many tournaments for them. Dustin has a feel to pitch and the arm and body to really take off once he gets back to full speed."
KYLE KIRK - INF - HOUSTON, TEXAS - ST. PIUS HIGH SCHOOL
"Kyle brings toughness and the ability to lead the program. He comes from a family of lifelong coaches and plays for coach Adam Massiate at St. Pius, where last season they finished second in the state."
Kyle has spent most of his time at third base and brings a left-handed bat with him. He understands the strike zone and has bat speed and strength. He is a grinder-type kid that loves to work."
JEREMY KIVEL - RHP - SPRING, TEXAS - SPRING HIGH SCHOOL
"Jeremy is a strong-armed right-handed pitcher that is really starting to come on the scene. Playing for Coach Kyle Humphreys at Spring High School, he will be counted on to anchor their pitching staff."
He is a tremendous competitor who is aggressive and confident on the mound. Armed with a low-to-mid 90s fastball, he is just beginning to scratch the surface of his potential."
JAKE LEMOINE - RHP - BRIDGE CITY, TEXAS - BRIDGE CITY HIGH SCHOOL
"Jake is a talented kid that has a very bright future. He has a loose, quick arm and the ability to spin a breaking ball that will be a swing-and-miss type pitch. He has played all over the country with the Southeast Texas Sun Devils, allowing him to pitch in the biggest environments against the best in the country. At 6-4, he has a chance to be a dominant guy as he matures on the mound'.
AVAIN RACHAL - INF - CYPRESS, TEXAS - CY-FAIR HIGH SCHOOL
"Avain is a kid that plays hard every time we have seen him play and really swings the bat. Avain plays for longtime coach Woody Champagne at Cy-Fair High School and is the cousin of UH associate head basketball coach Alvin Brooks."
Avain can play multiple positions and his get after it approach will fit right into our program."
JOSH VIDALES - SS - LAPORTE, TEXAS - LAPORTE HIGH SCHOOL
"Josh is an exciting player that brings with him high energy, leadership, the ability to switch hit as well as being a lock-down defender. This fall, Josh is the quarterback for the district champion LaPorte Bulldogs and will play this spring again for former Cougar great Ricky Torres."
In the summer, Josh plays for the Columbia Angels, one of the elite select programs in the Houston area. We really look forward to the energy and leadership Josh brings to the program."