LUBBOCK, Texas — The National College Baseball Hall of Fame announced today the creation of its newest award, designed to honor the accomplishments of college baseball players who went on to achieve greatness off the diamond.
“There are many college baseball players who enjoyed tremendous professional careers far removed from the baseball diamond,” said Mike Gustafson, president and CEO of the National College Baseball Hall of Fame. “Many of these men credit their involvement in the game for some of their later successes. We are proud to honor their accomplishments in this way.”
The award will be named after its inaugural recipient, George H.W. Bush, who after playing for Yale from 1946 to 1948 went on to be elected the 41st President of the United States. It will formally be called the George H.W. Bush Distinguished Alumnus Award.
To be eligible for the award, an individual must have earned a varsity letter in intercollegiate baseball competition.
Bush, called “Poppy” by his teammates, played first base for the Yale teams that played in the first two College World Series. He also served as the team captain for the 1948 squad.
“President Bush is truly an excellent example of what this award is designed to embody, and we are thrilled to present the first award to him and to have it bear his name going forward,” Gustafson said.
The award will be presented annually at a fall banquet in the recipient’s hometown. The recipients also will receive a bronze trophy, designed by Garland Weeks, depicting the Yale hat worn by Bush and the Rawlings George McQuinn “Claw” first baseman’s mitt used during his Yale career. He famously kept the glove in his desk drawer during his time in the Oval Office.
The inaugural award will be presented on Nov. 13 at Union Station at Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas. Tables of 10 for the event start at $5,000 and are on sale now. George P. Bush will accept on behalf of the former president.
The National College Baseball Hall of Fame, based in Lubbock, Texas, is a non-profit organization dedicated to recognizing and preserving the history of college baseball. In addition to the annual induction of the Hall of Fame class, the organization presents numerous awards to current college baseball players, coaches and umpires, including the Brooks Wallace Shortstop of the Year Award and the National Pitcher of the Year Award, during its annual Night of Champions event. The organization was founded in 2004, and the first Hall of Fame class was inducted in 2006. Currently, a capital campaign is underway to raise the $13 million needed to construct the George H.W. Bush National College Baseball Hall of Fame building and create an endowment.
For more information on the George H.W. Bush Distinguished Alumnus Award or to purchase tables for the inaugural presentation, contact Mike Gustafson at [email protected] or call (806) 749-2233.