College Sports

Wildcat Cowgill taken by D-backs

Collin Cowgill wanted no part of monitoring the Web Thursday, waiting to find out when he would be drafted.

So the extraordinary outfielder, with diplomas from Henry Clay High School and the University of Kentucky, relaxed with family.

”We were just sitting at home watching TV, trying not to think about it, and they called and said "hey, we're about to take you. Are you still ready to go?'“

Cowgill said yes and they — Arizona's Diamondbacks — picked him in the fifth round.

Cowgill is unsure when and where he'll play. Arizona has rookie clubs in Missoula, Mont., and Yakima, Wash.

”Hopefully, sign as soon as possible and get out and get playing again,“ he said. ”I've already got the itch.“

Drafted by the Oakland Athletics in the 27th round last year, Cowgill made ”absolutely the right decision“ to return to UK as a fourth-year junior. He sat out the 2007 season after breaking a bone in his hand.

Cowgill shared the team lead in homers (19) and scored a school-record 80 runs as the Cats tied the school record of 44 wins and earned an NCAA berth. He ranks among UK's top 10 in career homers (37), RBI (140) and runs (166).

”It's really kind of crazy to think that when I came in, and after the poor performance my freshman year, that I'd be in this position,“ said Cowgill, who hit .200 his first season. ”It's kind of amazing. ... I can't say enough about Coach (John) Cohen and Coach (Daniel) Riney, our strength coach. ... They turned me into a fifth-round draft pick when I came in in 2004 as just a college baseball player.“