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Greenhill takes pitching game to next level at Auburn University

“It’s just amazing. I’m truly blessed with the opportunity God has given me.”

That opportunity? For Cody Greenhill to play next-level baseball at Auburn University.

Greenhill committed to Auburn last October after the AU coaching staff saw him pitch at a tournament in Florida. “He’s had good instruction and is a kid we think can really help us right away,” said assistant coach and recruiting coordinator Brad Bohannon.

In a signing day ceremony last week, Greenhill made that October commitment official. Joining him at Auburn will be teammate Judd Ward, who also signed last week.

“I think Cody is right down Butch’s alley,” Coach Chris Heaps commented. “Butch is a pitching guru, and Cody is a very talented pitcher.”

AU Head Coach Butch Thompson was named Auburn’s head baseball coach last October. In 23 years of coaching at the collegiate level, including 13 in the Southeastern Conference, he has coached seven College World Series participants, including a national runner-up finish, won nine conference championships and made 14 postseason appearances. He has also served as an assistant under three National Coach of the Year recipients.

Player development has been equally important for Thompson, who has turned 23 student-athletes who went undrafted out of high school into Major League Baseball draft picks. Thompson has coached 22 Division I All-Americans and 29 all-conference honors, as well.

Greenhill said meeting Thompson, as well as the rest of the coaching staff and the players, convinced him Auburn was the right choice.

“It just felt like a big family, meeting everybody,” Greenhill said. “Going into this, I knew it was a great opportunity.”

Parents Kevin and Melissa Greenhill, longtime Auburn fans, are also excited to see their son get to take this next step.

“It’s a dream come true for him,” Kevin said. “It’s nice to see your kid set goals and reach them … He’s always wanted to play college baseball, and he’d love to go on to the next level and play pro ball. It’s always been his dream.”

Heaps praised Greenhill as one of the most accomplished pitchers, particularly without having yet played his senior season – 27 wins in three years.

“We’re so proud to have been blessed, just for a while, to have this talent,” Greenhill said. Like teammates Ward and Chad Wray, who also signed to play college ball last week, Heaps predicted a bright future in baseball for Greenhill.

“Their best baseball is probably ahead of them,” he said. “I think they can be really successful at the next level.”

RCS Superintendent Heath Grimes congratulated Greenhill on signing to play college baseball. “Any time our school system is represented by athletes like this, we’re proud of their accomplishments,” he said. “We want to see them succeed on so many different levels, and we hope we’ve had a little part in giving them the tools to do that.”

As for Greenhill, he’s looking forward to the college experience but will always cherish memories from the Golden Tigers’ state championship wins.

“I wouldn’t trade it for the world,” he said.