FAYETTEVILLE (KFSM)--Any Arkansas fan can tell you that Chad Spanberger hits for power. In the SEC tournament, he showed that might be an understatement. With five home runs in two days, his prowess was almost boring to his teammates.
"I think it got to a point where everyone expected it, so there wasn’t really celebrations, it was just high-fiving Chad," catcher Grant Koch says.
In Hoover, the high fives just kept coming. Spanberger tied an Arkansas school record with three home runs in a game against Auburn, then followed that up with two more against Florida. Second baseman Carson Shaddy likens the big man to a certain animal.
"He’s an ox"
Spanberger picked up 10 RBIs to go along with the five homers and a .421 average, all on his way to being named tournament MVP. Afterwords, he left even his team's own ace shaking his head.
"I don’t know how you pitch to him to be honest with you," says Blaine Knight. "I wouldn't."
That was part of the strategy Spanberger saw in the later games. After his power display, pitchers wanted no piece of the first baseman, choosing to intentionally walk him four times. But the fans on Twitter wanted more Spanberger. Prior to the tournament, he had a private Twitter account, but he knew he had to make a change after the Auburn game.
"The game I had three home runs I had like 300 people trying to follow me, so I was like I didn’t want to accept everybody so I just put it off private which made it easier."
Coach Dave Van Horn isn't worried about the attention going to his head.
"I don't know if we really need to talk to him too much about that, he's pretty level headed and he's had a really solid year, it's not like it came out of nowhere...he's had a good approach."
And the junior is just focused on staying hot.
"You know you’re not going to go out and hit three home runs every game, it’s kind of weird. But you just gotta go out and try to play your best."
Spanberger has 19 home runs on the season, just five away from tying the school record. The team takes on Oral Roberts in NCAA Regional action at Baum Friday.