Meet Your Islanders: Baseball's Bobby Buckner
The 2012 baseball season will be senior Bobby Buckner's third year with the Islanders. The native of Boise, Idaho, brought a wealth of talent to the team when he transferred from Navarro Junior College in 2009, where he averaged .320 with 27 runs batted in his one season.
Prior to NJC, Buckner redshirted for the University of Texas and played for the Anchorage Bucs of the Alaskan League during the summer of 2008.
In Buckner's first season with the Islanders, he started 39 games and had a .278 batting average with five home runs. Buckner was third on the team with 30 RBI and tied for team lead with four triples. As a junior, he hit .298 and garnered All-Southland Tournament honors, where he delivered the game-winning walk-off home run in the SLC tourney against UTSA.
Perhaps Buckner's baseball inspiration was drawn from his father, Bill Buckner. Bill Buckner is a former Major League Baseball star that played in the major leagues for 22 seasons with the Chicago Cubs, Los Angeles Dodgers, Boston Red Sox, California Angels and Kansas City Royals and was the 1980 National League batting champion.
Buckner is next up in the "Meet Your Islanders" features for GoIslanders.com, a unique way to get to truly know your Islander athletes. Media Relations Intern Amy Carrizales conducts the weekly in-depth feature on Islanders athletes that help them connect with their fans.
Amy Carrizales: What has been your greatest baseball accomplishment so far?
Bobby Buckner: Winning 37 games last year.
AC: Who on the team has the wildest personality?
BB: Drew "Droopy Drawers" Vest, aka Little V., because he dresses like a retired old man and thinks Texas A & M could beat Boise State in football.
AC: How did your father's career influence your passion for baseball while growing up?
BB: My father played the game harder than anyone; he was extremely humble and was a great Christian man on and off the field.
AC: What is one of the greatest memories that you will never forget?
BB: When Matt Holland got stuck in the fence during a practice after someone hit a ball to right field. Also, when Caleb Marx hit a home run in the conference tournament and came back in the dugout like a fired up silver back gorilla.
AC: People would be surprised to know that you….
BB: Love to fly fish and wakeboard.
AC: What is your favorite thing about Coach Malone?
BB: His sense of humor and passion for the game.
AC: What is one thing about you that most people don't know?
BB: I am a borderline professional ping-pong player.
AC: What are you most looking forward to this season?
BB: Winning the conference tournament.
AC: Do you have any game day routines or superstitions?
BB: Yes, I eat two Crispito's and drink chocolate milk from Stripes.
AC: Last season you helped beat your former team and NCAA D1 powerhouse, University of Texas. How big of a win was it for the ball club?
BB: It was a great win and it felt amazing beating my old team. It is great to see our program getting better and better each year.
AC: How did you feel during your walk-off at bat in the Southland Conference Tournament last season?
BB: I was down 0-2 so I was just trying to put the ball in play and get on base for J Mar (Jeramie Marek). When I saw the ball clear the fence it was one of the greatest feelings I have ever felt.
AC: What is the best piece of advice that your father has given you, life-wise?
BB: Approach every pitch, every at bat, every second on the field like it's your last because you never know when it will be. Life-wise, to stay grounded, remain humble and when you're in trouble go to God.
Pro Sports Team: Chicago Cubs
Quote: Philippians 2:10
Movie: A River Runs Through It
Car: Marc Damon's green machine