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Collin McCrabb remembers when the idea of playing college baseball became a realistic one.

"It was after last (sophomore) year when I had a great year on the mound," he said. "Once I had that year I think I realized I could go play college ball somewhere."

As it turns out, somewhere turned out to be North Iowa Area Community College. McCrabb announced his verbal commitment to the school Wednesday on his Twitter account.

McCrabb followed up a dominant sophomore season where he compiled a 12-1 record with a 1.22 earned run average with more of the same as a junior for Wilton.

He was 7-1 with a 0.84 earned run average this season for the Beavers, and he pitched 6 2/3 innings and struck out 10 batters in their Class 2A state quarterfinal win over Denver.

He was no slouch at the plate, either, where he had a .382 batting average with four home runs and 34 RBIs.

McCrabb went to NIACC's campus on Saturday and liked what coach Travis Hergert had to say. So he committed shortly after.

"He's a great guy," McCrabb said of Hergert. "I liked what they had going on and how their program was. They really care about their players a lot. They want to do what's best for them to get to the next level.

"They have a lot of ways to move guys on with the technology they use and the way they do things."

NIACC uses technology similar to many major league teams to track spin rates on pitches as well as other data.

Of course, it didn't hurt to have former Wilton baseball player Evan Reifert, who just finished his freshman season for NIACC, in the recruiting fold.

"I think the biggest thing was with Evan is I talked to him about how their program was and how their campus was," McCrabb said. "He really got me interested in the place, just him telling me how much he liked it."

McCrabb says Hergert envisions the Wilton standout as somebody who can move forward past the junior college level. But for now, McCrabb is focused on ways he can improve since he's still a year away from stepping foot on campus.

"I'd say just getting more competitive on the mound," McCrabb said. "Also, upping my velocity on all of my pitches, just being more dominant."

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Sports Reporter

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