Sports

Weeks leads Team USA to gold

From the moment Jemile Weeks stepped onto the University of Miami campus, he has exceeded every expectation. From his award- winning play in the College World Series to his outstanding play for The USA National Team, Weeks has shown why he will be a force to be reckoned with this baseball season.

Weeks may still be relatively new to the college game, having only one season under his belt, but he is no stranger to baseball. For his undeniable talent and potential, Weeks was drafted by the Milwaukee Brewers out of high school, but he decided to attend Miami and play collegiate ball before starting his professional career.

“It was a critical decision,” Weeks said. “But in the end, prestige as a university and baseball program was a driving factor.”

Weeks was given the opportunity to play for one of college baseball’s top tier teams, and Miami Baseball was given a skilled speedster with talent, undeniable determination, and a pristine character.

Weeks finished last season with a .352 batting average, six homeruns, and 40 runs batted in.

Weeks ended the season by earning Lincoln Regional most valuable player honors, was named Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American Second Baseman and named to the All-Atlantic Coast Conference Second Team.

Even after accomplishing so much in his first year, the adventure was not over. Weeks was offered a slot on the USA Baseball National Team to compete in the International University Sports Federation World Championship.

“It was an incredible opportunity,” Weeks said. “I was honored to have been picked to represent my country, and I was grateful that I was able to help my team and my country win it all.”

Weeks started all 31 games for the USA National Team, finishing in the top three in almost every statistical category. Weeks finished with a batting average of .348, four homeruns, 24 runs batted in, 30 runs, 39 hits, 23 walks and 14 stolen bases.

His outstanding play at bat and excellent leadership skills helped Team USA obtain the gold medal after conquering the Chinese Taipei in the finals.

The quality performances that Weeks has brought to Hurricane baseball can be expected to continue into the upcoming season.

“I will give it 100 percent this season,” said Weeks. “You will get the most I can offer. What more can you ask for?”

Weeks admits that he has a great deal to learn and improve. With this in mind, Weeks spent the off-season working on his defense, improving on stealing bases, and waking up for 5 a.m. workouts.

He has also set the bar quite high for himself this year, as he has set some lofty, yet achievable goals.

“I want to help my team in any way possible,” Weeks said. “I want to help us get to Omaha and win.”

Weeks is fast, smart, and determined, making him a triple threat for any pitcher. He will undoubtedly be an asset to the ‘Canes as they work toward their fifth National Title.

“I hate losing,” said Weeks. “I don’t and won’t accept losing. I always think I can win.”

Jemile’s 2006 Stats

AB256 AVG.352 R69 HR6 RBI40 SB13 OBP.446 SLG.555 OPS1.001

Pravin Patel may be contacted at p.patel7@umiami.edu.

September 15, 2006

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


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The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.