BYU pitcher Mike Rucker only needed one reason to transfer from Gonzaga to the Y. “I wasn’t happy there,” he said. “I couldn’t really see myself there for four years.” It was that simple. Rucker knew he would only be truly happy when he was baptized a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and could be with the girl he loved.
Rucker was born in Mississippi and moved to Washington before starting little league. Baseball quickly became his passion and he realized that pitching was his forte.
“My dad had me start throwing to him while he was squatting down in the backyard, so we played catch that way,” Rucker claimed. “Even when I was nine or ten, pitching or just throwing in general was something that I was good at. Hitting and fielding were my secondary skills.”