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Johnny Bench Scholarship Fund

Mission

The purpose of the Johnny Bench Scholarship Fund is to provide scholarships to college and university undergraduates who have displayed both academic and athletic credentials during their high school careers, and who are in need of financial help to begin or continue their education at the college or university level.

History

  • The Johnny Bench Scholarship Fund was established with a donation of $25,000 in 1983 by the Cincinnati Reds as a tribute to Johnny’s illustrious 17-year career with the team.
  • Over 775 recipients have received grants through the 2017-18 school year totaling over $2,420,000, including 67 from Johnny’s home state of Oklahoma;
  • Currently there are 57 students receiving scholarships at 10 colleges and universities including 8 students from Binger, Oklahoma, Johnny’s home town.
  • There have been over 345 students graduate from college with financial assistance from the Johnny Bench Scholarship Fund.

HOMETOWN LEGEND

 
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Binger, OK

The hometown of Johnny Bench is now the official site of both the Johnny Bench Museum, which houses all 10 Gold Gloves he acquired throughout his career, and Johnny Bench Field which serves as home to the Binger-Oney High School.

Visit the museum:

202 W. Main Street

Binger, OK 73009

JOHNNY BENCH AWARD

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The Johnny Bench Award

"Presented to the collegiate catcher whose talent, toughness, and integrity most closely resembled the legend after whom the award is named."

 
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The Award

The Johnny Bench Award, proudly sponsored by BaseballSavings.com, is presented to the nation's most outstanding collegiate catcher, Johnny Bench, arguably the greatest catcher of all time, agreed to be the namesake for the annual award, which has accurately predicted some of MLB's next biggest stars.

The Johnny Bench Award is presently annually to the nation's top collegiate catcher as voted on by Division I coaches. A watch list is compiled from nominations received from the universities and released in March.

A selection committee will then narrow the list down to the semifinalists. Statistical information on each semifinalist is then compiled and sent to the national selection committee by the end of May. A vote by the national selection committee narrows the list to three finalists.

Another vote during the College World Series will determine who will be named the Johnny Bench National Collegiate Catcher of the Year. The three finalists will be brought to Wichita, KS for the awards banquet on June 29th, 2017.

LEARN MORE >

BASEBALL IMMORTAL

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Bench in bronze

Johnny is not only immortalized in the Hall of Fame at Cooperstown, he has also been honored by both the Cincinnati Reds and his home state of Binger, Oklahoma with statues in his likeness.

 
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Great American Ballpark

Sparky Anderson once said, "I don't want to embarrass any other catcher by comparing him to Johnny Bench". The Little General of the Big Red Machine is now a cornerstone icon at the Cincinnati Reds home stadium.

Located at the entrance of the Reds Hall of Fame, into which Johnny was inducted in 1986, this sculpture depicts Johnny doing what he was known for best and as he would say, "I can throw out any man alive."

Visit: 100 Joe Nuxhall Way, Cincinnati, OH 45202

Sculptor: Tom Tsuchiya


Bricktown Ballpark

Growing up in rural Oklahoma, picking cotton and painting gas tanks, young Johnny never thought he could be a major league player till he saw the great Mickey Mantle on TV. Now his idol is his neighbor as the two Hall of Famers from the Sooner State greet fans at the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark, currently home to the Oklahoma City Dodgers.

This statue serves as a reminder to all young baseball players that no matter where you are from, no matter how far you think you are from the big leagues, baseball is for all.

Visit: 2 Mickey Mantle Drive, Oklahoma City, OK 73104

Sculptor: Paul Moore

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