SAVANNAH Ga. (WSAV) – The Savannah State Tigers are the best team in the SIAC, and that’s not an opinion. They are number one in the conference with a 28-2 SIAC record.

“They bought into the culture here, and I think that’s really helped the program moving forward,” Carlton Hardy, the head baseball coach at Savannah State, said of his players.

Calvin Rucker is one of the key contributors for Savannah State’s success. Rucker has scored 24 runs so far in the 2022 season.

“I just try to see all the guys’ reactions,” Rucker said. “Making sure everybody is up and pumped… just doing something for my boys, that’s all that matters.”

Rucker played for Georgetown in 2021 before Hardy convinced him to come to Savannah State.

“I actually recruited Calvin out of high school,” Coach Hardy said. “He went someplace and ended up at Georgetown. Then he was like, coach, I want to play one more year, and I want to play for you.”

That was a second chance for Coach Hardy to seize the moment.

“The transfer portal itself is kind of ruthless,” Rucker said. “You never know what’s going to happen. You never know who you are going to get a call from.”

One call from his closest friends, teammates Zion Roland and Clayton Brody, helped Rucker find his new home.

“It’s unreal,” Rucker said. “These guys are my family. I know what I would be doing without them. A lot of these guys made the game special again.”