Preston Tucker named finalist for Lowe's Senior CLASS Award
Plant alum and Florida senior infielder/outfielder Preston Tucker is one of 10 baseball student-athletes to be named as a finalist for the 2012 Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award. To be eligible for the award, students must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition.
The award was won by former Gator Brandon McArthur in 2009.
An anthropology major, Tucker was selected in the 16th round of the 2011 Major League Baseball Draft by the Colorado Rockies last year, but decided to return to Florida for his senior season. At the time, Tucker said: “A lot of guys don’t have the opportunity to say that they got a college degree and I always want to have that to my credit. The bottom line is that I can go off and play pro ball next year and this is an opportunity that I really didn't want to pass up. It's playing baseball, it's the game I've always loved to play so in the end I'll still be doing what I love.”
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
Tucker has helped with the Friends of Jaclyn adoption with the rest of his teammates and assisted with the Climb for Cancer, an event in which Gator student-athletes play games and compete with cancer-stricken children and their siblings in a variety of sports. During the holiday season, Tucker and his teammates served hot meals to members of Gainesville's homeless community.
Tucker is currently hitting .314 and he ranks second on the squad in slugging percentage (.597), total bases (95), RBI (31), doubles (11) and homers (10). He has a career batting average of .329 and is the school’s all-time leader in RBI (239) and doubles (64). Tucker currently ranks second in hits (307) and third in home runs (51).
Lowe’s will announce the Senior CLASS Award winner during the 2012 NCAA College World Series, which will be held June 15-26 in Omaha. Fans are encouraged to vote on the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award website through June 11.