Bowling Green, Ky. — Late on the second day of the 2008 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft, Western Kentucky University’s Chad Cregar was selected by the Chicago Cubs. The junior outfielder and designated hitter was picked in the 47th round with the 1,413th overall selection. Cregar will have one more year of eligibility with the Hilltoppers.
In his first year on the Hill, Cregar finished with a team-high .360 batting average, and tied sophomore Wade Gaynor for the team lead in hits with 90. He also became the first Hilltopper since 1985 to hit 20 home runs in a season, finishing with 21 after his blast in the regional. That four-run shot also broke the WKU single-season RBI record as he finished the year with 82 — three more than Mike Williams’ previous mark set during the 1980 campaign.
Cregar hit .500 (4-for-8) in WKU’s two games in the 2008 NCAA Regionals against #5 Oklahoma State and #18 TCU, earning all-tournament honors. That included a 3-for-4 effort against the Horned Frogs as he picked up a pair of doubles and hit a first-inning grand slam. He also scored a pair of runs on the weekend and finished with a 1.125 slugging percentage.
He was named the Sun Belt Conference Newcomer of the Year, and was a first-team all-SBC selection in ’08. Cregar also earned a spot on the Sun Belt all-tournament team after helping lead the Hilltoppers to their second league tournament championship.