The Belmont Bruins feature two of the top pitchers in the Ohio Valley Conference, and on Friday they were recognized as such.
Joshua South and Kyle Brennan were named to the Perfect Game preseason All-OVC team, while South was named the OVC preseason Pitcher of the Year by the organization.
South was also named the conference’s preseason Pitcher of the Year by Collegiate Baseball Newspaper and D1Baseball, which also listed him as one of the OVC’ top 20 prospects for the 2021 MLB Draft as well.
The 6-foot-3 sophomore was named preseason Pitcher of the Year last year by the OVC and was listed as one of the NCAA’s top 20 sophomore pitchers by D1Baseball. A native of Cookeville, he went 2-0 with a 2.42 ERA and 26 strikeouts in 26 innings before the COVID-19 pandemic canceled the rest of the season.
He ranked in the OVC’s top 10 last year in six statistical categories including ERA, strikeouts and runs allowed (7). South struck out seven or more batters in three of his four starts, including a season-high nine against Morehead State.
Brennan, a Franklin native and Centennial High graduate, last season struck out 23 batters over 18.2 innings with a 1.45 ERA and led the NCAA with five wins. He ranked in the OVC’s top 10 in 12 statistical categories, and his three saves moved him into seventh place on Belmont’s all-time saves list (14).
The 5-foot-10 junior was named the OVC preseason Pitcher of the Year by Collegiate Baseball Newspaper last season and he was named to the NCBWA Stopper of the Year preseason watch list as well.
Belmont opens the 2021 season on Tuesday against Illinois State at 4 p.m. at Rose Park.
The Bruins, who went 14-3 last year — winning their final eight games and receiving votes in the final National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association top 30 poll — also have received votes in the 2021 Collegiate Baseball Newspaper preseason poll.