LAWRENCE, Kan. — Head coach Dan Fitzgerald announced the addition of 13 signees to the 2023 recruiting class. The first recruiting class for Fitzgerald and his staff features eight junior-college transfers and five high school recruits.
“We are really excited about our recruiting class,” Fitzgerald said. “We feel like we addressed a number of needs, and most importantly, we feel like we have added great people to our Jayhawk family. Our coaching staff worked relentlessly on this class. Jon Coyne did an incredible job coordinating the effort and was heavily assisted by Brandon Scott and Tyler Hancock.
We are really excited about where we are headed and this recruiting class will be a huge piece of the puzzle moving forward.”
Fitzgerald will be entering his first season as head coach in 2023. He was hired on June 15, 2022. Fitzgerald came to Kansas following one year at LSU, where he served as assistant coach and recruiting coordinator. Prior to his time in Baton Rouge, Fitzgerald spent nine years at Dallas Baptist as both an assistant coach and associate head coach, along with being the recruiting coordinator. While at DBU, he gained valuable experience on constructing rosters and how to elevate a program to the national spotlight.
“Our entire coaching staff worked tirelessly to build this recruiting class,” Assistant Coach/Recruiting Coordinator Jon Coyne said. “It’s a great mixture of high school and junior college recruits and some of the best in the nation. We used the relationships that we have with coaches across the country to help point us in the right direction to identify talented players. We’re really excited about this class we put together.”
Below is a breakdown on each member of the class.
|Brady Blake||INF // Indianola HS|
|Devin Bennett||RHP // McLennan Community College|
|Cayden Collins||RHP // Scottsdale Community College|
|Cooper Combs||OF // Johnson County Community College|
|Chase Diggins||SS // Odessa College|
|Ben Hartl||C // Heartland Community College|
|Cooper Moore||C/RHP // Bixby HS|
|Evan Shaw||LHP // Cochise College|
|Patrick Steitz||RHP // Central Arizona College|
|Izack Tiger||RHP // Butler Community College|
|Dominic Voegele||RHP // Columbia HS|
|Colton Wemhoff||OF // Rockhurst HS|
|Ty Wisdom||INF/OF // Liberty North HS|
INF • 6-2 • 180 • R/R
Indianola, Iowa • Indianola HS
Notes: Ranked the No. 2 shortstop in Iowa by Perfect Game and Prep Baseball Report … No. 7 overall prospect in the state of Iowa according to Prep Baseball Report … No. 8 overall prospect in the state of Iowa according to Perfect Game … 2022 4A District 7 Champions … 2022 Iowa State High School Baseball Tournament Qualifier … All-State First Team as a junior in 2022 … All-State Third team as a sophomore in 2021 … All-District First Team as a sophomore and junior in 2021 and 2022 … Unanimous All-Conference First Team as a sophomore and junior in 2021 and 2022 … Slashed .383/.479/.717 with 11 doubles, nine home runs, 31 RBIs, 43 runs and 13 stolen bases as a junior in 2022 … Hit .407 with 10 doubles, three homers, 32 RBIs, 38 runs and 15 stolen bases as a sophomore in 2021 … Played baseball, basketball and football at Indianola High School … Has a grandpa and three uncles who have been drafted and played professional baseball … One uncle, Casey Blake, played in the Major Leagues from 2003-2012 … National Honor Society in 2021-22 and 2022-23 … Chose Kansas over Iowa and Creighton … Committed in September 2022 … Son of Joe and Barb Blake … Has one older sister, Leah.
Blake on why KU: “I chose Kansas because the campus felt like home to me. I had an immediate connection with Coach Fitzgerald – I loved talking to him. He made me feel as if I could make an impact early on and really sold me that he is going to turn the program around. I really like the prospect of playing in the Big 12 which has very good competition top to bottom every year. The Big 12 also has a lot of warm weather schools and being from Iowa, this is huge. KU is also close to home for me, so my friends and family can come and watch our games.”
RHP • 6-3 • 185 • R/R
Fort Worth, Texas • Benbrook HS/McLennan Community College
Notes: Currently in his second year at McLennan Community College … Ranked 48th on the 2022 Perfect Game Top 500 JUCO Prospect List … Helped McLennan Community College win the NJCAA DI World Series in 2022 … Went 9-2 with a 3.39 ERA, and 71 strikeouts in 69.0 innings pitched over 15 appearances (14 starts) in 2022 … Ranked the No. 8 right-handed pitcher in the state of Texas, and the No. 18 overall prospect in the state according to Prep Baseball Report in 2021 … Helped Benbrook High School win the conference championship on three occasions … Recorded 18 strikeouts over seven innings against the No. 5 team in the nation in high school … All-State First Team selection … Named to the All-Conference team as a pitcher in high school … Played football and basketball in addition to baseball at Benbrook High School … Chose Kansas over Oklahoma, LSU, TCU, Oregon, Kansas State and Alabama … Committed in November 2022 … Son of Justin Bennett and Kandice Marburger … Has two sisters, Kailyn and Kynleigh, and one brother, Owen.
Bennett on why KU: “When I got to Kansas, I felt very comfortable and definitely felt like it was a home away from my home. It also felt like a family as well, and I’m a big family person.”
RHP • 6-3 • 185 • R/R
Surprise, Ariz. • Mountain Ridge HS/Yavapai College/Scottsdale Community College
Notes: Currently in his first year at Scottsdale Community College … Played his freshman season at Yavapai College … Went 2-0 with a 3.29 ERA, three saves and 32 strikeouts in 27.1 innings pitched over 15 appearances in 2022 … Ranked the No. 5 right-handed pitcher in Arizona by Perfect Game and Prep Baseball Report in 2021 … No. 14 overall prospect in the state of Arizona according to Perfect Game in 2021 … Won the conference championship in 2021 … Played one year of basketball and one year of golf in addition to baseball at Mountain Ridge High School … Has two brothers that played college baseball … His brother, Tyler played four years of college baseball at Glendale Community College and Ottawa University … His brother, Rylan played two years of college baseball at Ottawa University … Chose Kansas over Utah Valley and Pepperdine … Committed in October 2022 … Son of Scott and Teresa Collins … Has three brothers, Tyler, Rylan and Brayden.
Collins on why KU: “Kansas felt like the place for me to continue to play good baseball. Also, it’s a good school to finish my degree at.”
OF • 5-11 • 180 • R/R
Springdale, Ark. • Springdale HS/Johnson County Community College
Notes: Currently in his second season at Johnson County Community College … Ranked 298th on the 2022 Perfect Game Top 500 JUCO Prospect List … Selected second-team All-Kansas Jayhawk Community College Conference East Division at outfield … JBB Division I NJCAA Third Team All-American … Started all 61 games he played … Slashed .378/.520/.694 (73-for-193), with 11 doubles, four triples, 14 home runs, 59 RBIs, 69 runs, 43 walks and 20 stolen bases … Produced 21 multi-hit games and 17 multi-RBI games … Led the team and tied for sixth in the conference in walks (43) … Also, led the team and tied for seventh in the KJCCC in runs scored (69) … No. 5 ranked outfielder in the state of Arkansas, and the No. 13 overall prospect in the state according to Perfect Game in 2021 … Earned Arkansas All-State and 6A West All-Conference his senior year … Was named the Hitter of the Year after batting .422 with 24 hits, five doubles, two triples, three home runs, 25 runs scored, 21 RBI and 22 stolen bases as a senior … Hit .483 with seven hits, three doubles a triple, eight runs and five RBI before the season was stopped due to the COVID-19 pandemic … Helped his team win the WWBA 18U Championship at US Nationals in 2021 … Was part of the PBR National Champion team in 2020 … National Honors Society and National Spanish Honors Society member … Co-Valedictorian … His father, Randy, played baseball at Labette Community College … Has a superstition to drink a Dr. Pepper before every game … Chose Kansas over LSU, Arkansas and Western Kentucky … Committed in September 2022 … Son of Randy and Stacy Combs … Has one older sister, Abby.
Combs on why KU: “I chose Kansas because I really liked the coaches and I really liked what they were telling me about rebuilding the program. All the coaches were really easy to talk to and felt like they really wanted me to be a part of their program.”
SS • 6-0 • 170 • R/R
Perth, Australia • Doshisha International School, Kyoto/Odessa College
Notes: Currently in his second season at Odessa College … All-WJCAC First Team … JBB Division I NJCAA All-American Honorable Mention … Played 56 games … Hit .407/.472/.643 (90-for-221), with 18 doubles, eight triples, six homers, 65 RBIs, 75 runs, 23 walks and 19 stolen bases … Tallied 29 multi-hit games and 17 multi-RBI games … Led the team in hits (90) and triples (8) … Lived in Australia until he was 15 before moving to Japan to play high school baseball for three years … His brother, Joshua, played baseball at Colby Community College … Chose Kansas over Arizona, Kansas State, Dallas Baptist and Wichita State … Committed in November 2022 … Son of Courtney and Misato Diggins … One older brother, Joshua, and one younger sister, Paige.
Diggins on why KU: “I chose Kansas because it seemed like the perfect fit for me. On my visit, I was fortunate enough to watch a baseball game and the atmosphere at that game got me excited. Along with that, the coaching staff was really helpful during the recruiting process and I feel like they can help me reach my goal of making it to the big leagues.”
C • 5-11 • 200 • R/R
Springfield, Ill. • Springfield HS/Heartland Community College
Notes: Currently in his second season at Heartland Community College … ABCA/Rawlings NJCAA Div. II All-America First Team … JBB Division II NJCAA First Team All-American … Helped Heartland become conference champions with a perfect 32-0 record and punch a ticket to NJCAA DII World Series … Batted .435/.571/.842 (77-for-177), with 25 doubles, four triples, 13 home runs, 68 RBIs, 86 runs and 35 walks … Led the team in doubles (25) and on-base percentage (.571) … No. 2 ranked catcher in the state of Illinois, and the No. 14 overall prospect in the state according to Prep Baseball Report in 2021 … Helped Springfield High School win its first baseball state championship (3A) in 2021 … All-Conference First team selection as a freshman (2018) and senior (2021) … All-Conference Honorable Mention as a sophomore (2019) … Hit .355 in 96 games over three years in high school … Chose Kansas over UNC-Charlotte, Cincinnati, Western Kentucky and SIU-Carbondale … Committed in October 2022 … Son of Dan and Jen Hartl … Has one younger sister, Sam.
Hartl on why KU: “I chose Kansas because it felt like this was the place where I could call home my final two years of college. I believe in the coaching staff that they will help me develop into the best person and ball player I can be.”
C/RHP • 6-1 • 185 • R/R
Bixby, Okla. • Bixby HS
Notes: Ranked the No. 1 catcher in the state of Oklahoma, and the No. 10 overall prospect in the state according to Prep Baseball Report … No. 37 ranked catcher nationally by Prep Baseball Report … Helped Bixby become Regional Champions in 2021 and 2022 … Made state two years in a row … Part of the 50-hit club which is 50 hits in a single season and only 11 players have ever done it at Bixby … Played one year of football and one year of golf in addition to baseball at Bixby High School … His cousin, Cody Daylor, played baseball at Arkansas Little Rock … Chose Kansas over Oklahoma State, Oklahoma, Wichita State, Kansas State, Xavier, Missouri, Oral Roberts and UCF … Committed in October 2021 … Son of Rocky and Holly Moore … Has a twin sister, Chloe.
Moore on why KU: “KU is the best spot for me because it felt like home as soon as I walked on campus. Even with the coaching change, it never felt like KU was not the place for me. Also, I wanted to be a part of turning around the program and making a difference.”
LHP • 6-4 • 200 • L/L
Fridley, Minn. • Fridley HS/Minnesota State/Cochise College
Notes: Currently in his second season at Cochise College … Also played one season at Minnesota State in 2020 … Went 6-2 with a 3.58 ERA, and 70 strikeouts in 50.1 innings pitched in 11 starts in 2022 at Cochise College … Finished 1-0 with a 3.38 ERA, and seven strikeouts in 5.1 innings pitched over seven appearances in 2020 at Minnesota State … Ranked the No. 5 left-handed pitcher in the state of Minnesota, and the No. 33 overall prospect in the state according to Perfect Game in 2019 … Went 32-8 with a 1.39 ERA, and 347 strikeouts in 286.2 innings pitched during his four-year high school career at Fridley High School … His wins (fourth-most in state history), ERA, strikeouts (sixth-most in state history) and innings pitched (state record) are all school records … Also, had 21 career pickoffs which are a school record and the second-most in state history … Holds the single-season record at Fridley High School in innings pitched (78.2), strikeouts (123), ERA (0.45), pickoffs (9) and batting average against (.152) … Helped his team win the conference title in 2018 and 2019 … Four-time all-conference selection (2016-19) … Class 3A All-State selection in 2019 … Playball Minnesota Mr. Baseball Award Finalist in 2019 … Minnesota Baseball Hub, Breakout Individual Performance in 2019 … Named to the Metro-North All-Star Team in 2019 … Threw back-to-back no-hitters his freshman year of high school … Played basketball for four years in addition to baseball at Fridley High School … His grandpa, Jack Hoppe, played college baseball at Minnesota when they won the College World Series in 1956 … His uncle, Dennis, Hoppe, played baseball in the Minnesota Twins organization, making it as high as Triple-A … Chose Kansas over Purdue, Grand Canyon, Ohio State, Tulane, New Mexico State and Utah … Committed in October 2022 … Son of Mark and Julie Shaw … Has one older brother, Wyatt.
Shaw on why KU: “Kansas was one of the first schools to reach out to me and one of the only ones to come down to Cochise to watch me play. The coaching staff stayed in touch with me the most out of any other school, always making sure everything was good and always expressing how much they wanted me to become a Jayhawk.
Then, I finally came for a visit and I got to meet the rest of the coaching staff in person that I hadn’t already met, along with some of the players. All of them were great and made me feel right at home. The coaching staff also filled me in on a plan that they had for my future and showed that they truly care about my future as a person and as a player. Everything made me feel at home, the campus was beautiful, the people were great and the baseball is great too, so it felt like the right move.”
RHP • 6-8 • 210 • R/R
Peoria, Ariz. • Liberty HS/Central Arizona College
Notes: Currently in his second season at Central Arizona College … Ranked 220th on the 2022 Perfect Game Top 500 JUCO Prospect List … Helped Central Arizona win the NJCAA Division I World Series in 2022 … went 9-3 with a 3.67 ERA, and 56 strikeouts in 56.1 innings pitched over 14 appearances (12 starts) … No. 3 ranked right-handed pitcher in the state of Arizona, and the No. 8 overall prospect in the state according to Perfect Game in 2021 … His team won the 6A State Championship … Threw a complete game in the semifinals … Named all-state … Played basketball for four years in addition to baseball at Liberty High School … Chose Kansas over Grand Canyon … Committed in October 2022 … Son of Jay and Melody Steitz … Has one older sister, Lauryn … His aunt attended KU.
Steitz on why KU: “Kansas just felt right and with many relatives in Kansas. It’s going to be a home away from home as well as the turnaround KU is going to have after the coaching change.”
RHP • 6-2 • 190 • R/R
Del City, Okla. • Del City HS/Butler Community College
Notes: Currently in his third season at Butler Community College … All-Conference Honorable Mention … went 9-3 with a 4.32 ERA, and 94 strikeouts in 77.0 innings pitched over 15 appearances (14 starts) in 2022 … led the team in wins (9) and innings pitched (77.0) … posted a team-best 2.37 ERA in the COVID shortened 2020 season … tossed 30.1 innings and earned a 2-2 record in 2020 at Butler … All-State Honorable Mention and Team MVP at Del City High School in 2018 and 2020 … All-City selection … Chose Kansas over Wichita State … Committed in September 2022 … Son of Shaunte Standifer … Has two brothers, Joey and Christian.
Tiger on why KU: “The coaching staff on my visit they made me believe that they want to win and change the program around. They also believe in me to help them win.”
RHP • 6-2 • 180 • R/R
Columbia, Ill. • Columbia HS
Notes: Ranked the No. 4 pitcher in the state of Illinois, and the No. 11 overall prospect in the state according to Prep Baseball Report … Helped Columbia High School become Cahokia Conference Champions in 2022 … All-State selection in 2022 … Named All-Conference in 2021 and 2022 … Went 12-3 with a 1.63 ERA, and 138 strikeouts in 86.1 innings pitched in his high school career … Held opponents to a .139 batting average … Played four years of football and three years of basketball in addition to two years of baseball at Columbia High School … All-Conference in football all four years … Chose Kansas over Illinois State and Western Kentucky … Committed in August 2022 … Son of Matthew and Kiley Voegele … Has two younger brothers, Mason and Xavier.
Voegele on why KU: “I chose Kansas because when I went on my unofficial visit the coaches and people I talked to were awesome and the campus was amazing, which really made me want to be apart of the KU family. KU is also a good distance away from home, meaning it isn’t too far, but not too close.”
OF • 6-2 • 200 • R/R
Gladstone, Mo. • Rockhurst HS
Notes: Ranked the No. 1 outfielder in the state of Missouri, and the No. 13 overall prospect in the state according to Prep Baseball Report … No. 184 ranked outfielder nationally by Perfect Game … Named All-State and All-District as a sophomore after hitting .421 on the season … Selected as All-District following his junior season at Rockhurst … Played four years of football and one year of basketball in addition to three years of baseball at Rockhurst High School … His two sisters, Nicole and Emily, played four years of college volleyball at UMKC and Cornell, respectively … Committed in September 2021 … Son of Doug and Judeen Wemhoff … Has two older sisters, Nicole and Emily, and one older brother, Jon.
Wemhoff on why KU: “I chose KU because of the coaching staff, business school, and the amazing atmosphere of Lawrence, Kansas. I also chose KU because it is close to home.”
INF/OF • 6-0 • 190 • L/R
Kansas City, Mo. • Liberty North HS
Notes: Ranked the No. 1 second baseman in the state of Missouri by Prep Baseball Report … No. 11 overall prospect in the state of Missouri and the No. 109 ranked second baseman nationally by Perfect Game … Helped lead Liberty North High School to a state championship, district championship and conference championship in 2022 … All-State First Team (Utility), All-Conference First Team (Infield), Conference Player of the Year, 810 ESPY for Missouri Male High School Athlete of the Year, Collegiate Baseball All-American Second Team (2B/RHP) in 2022 … Hit .398 with 18 doubles, one triple, two home runs, 38 RBIs, 35 runs and 28 walks in 2022 … On the mound went 7-0 with a 0.69 ERA, four saves and 34 strikeouts over 30.2 IP in 2022 … All-State First Team (Utility) and All-Conference First Team (Infield) in 2021 … Also won the conference championship in 2021 … Batted .402 with five doubles, three triples, two home runs, 21 RBIs, 39 runs and 21 walks in 2021 … Tossed 25.0 innings and went 5-0 with a 0.56 ERA, three saves and 39 strikeouts compared to only four walks in 2021 … Academic All-State in 2021 and 2022 … Played one year of basketball in addition to baseball at Liberty North High School … His father, Robert, played college baseball at Maple Woods Community College and Central Missouri … Chose Kansas over Missouri State, Missouri and Nebraska … Committed in September 2021 … Son of Robert and Brandi Wisdom.
Wisdom on why KU: “I chose the University of Kansas because it will provide me the opportunity to get a solid education and the ability to play baseball with a great program. When I first stepped on campus, it felt like home. The coaching staff and the players on the team welcomed me and my family with open arms. I knew in my heart that this is where I can contribute on the baseball field and help continue to mold the strong KU traditions.”