Photo courtesy Elisabetta Zengaro/Delta State Athletics
Delta State University junior first-baseman Zack Shannon didn't win the 2017 Ferriss Trophy, but he will get an opportunity that the other finalists might not get. Shannon and his teammates have a chance to win a national championship in the Division II Men's College World Series.
In his first season with the Statesmen, the Cincinnati, Ohio, native is leading the team in batting average at .442, slugging percentage at .799, on-base percentage at .506, runs scored with 62, hits with 92, RBIs with 88, homeruns with 19 and total bases with 192.
Shannon wasn't just the best player at Delta State this season, though. He also led the Gulf South Conference in batting average, slugging percentage, hits, RBIs and homeruns.
Shannon, who is 6 feet and 3 inches tall, and 230 pounds, is one of the top players in the nation, as well. He is first in RBIs for the entire division, fourth in batting average, sixth in hits and total bases, eighth in slugging percentage, tied for ninth in homeruns, 24th in on-base percentage and tied for 29th in runs.
Honors for the first baseman are steadily rolling in at this point in the season. On top of being named 2017 GSC Player of the Year, Shannon also earned First Team All-GSC honors. After helping lead DSU to the conference-tournament title, he was named to the All-Tournament Team and selected as the Most Outstanding Player. He was also named to the NCAA South Region All-Tournament Team for his play in the regional.
Since helping the Statesmen reach their 12th College World Series, Shannon has also been a finalist for the Division II Baseball News Tino Martinez Award, which the most outstanding player in the division receives. He also earned Division II Collegiate Commissioners Association All-South Region First Team and South Region Player of the Year honors.
National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association named Shannon First Team All-American, Player of the Year, Division II All-South Region First Team and South Region Player of the Year.
Few honors are left for Shannon to take home at this point, but the slugger could still be the Most Outstanding Player and on the All-Tournament team in the College World Series if Delta State makes a deep run.
Before coming to DSU, Shannon attended Anderson High School in Cincinnati, Ohio, where he was the top-ranked first baseman, and Perfect Game ranked him as the 34th overall prospect in the nation. He was then a baseball star for Wabash Valley Community College in Mount Carmel, Ill. He had a .392 batting average with 44 runs, 30 RBIs, 20 doubles and seven homeruns in the 2016 season.
The 44-11 Statesmen open the Division II Men's College World Series against Lindenwood University on Saturday, May 27. DSU will face either West Chester University or the University of North Georgia in its second game. The Division II College World Series is a double-elimination tournament.