ATH: Hall of Fame Inductee Spotlight - Greg Polli
Courtesy: Hofstra Athletic Communications
Hempstead, NY - Each week, leading up to the 2013 Hall of Fame Dinner on April 13, GoHofstra.com will feature one of the seven individuals and two teams being inducted in the Class of 2013. Today Greg Polli of the baseball team is highlighted.
"I met Greg as a freshman at Hofstra in the fall of 1981, but we had actually been adversaries on the baseball field before that as we both played for rival high schools. He spotted a high school team jacket that I was wearing one day and struck up a conversation with me. That day started a friendship that lasted throughout our experiences at Hofstra, and more than 30 years later, we remain very close friends and have shared so many fantastic experiences together both on and off the baseball field. No one has generated better baseball statistics or was a better baseball player than Greg, nor is more deserving of this honor than Greg. It's hard to understand why a professional team did not snatch him up quickly en route to a successful professional career. But in a way it's good that he wasn't because he has had such a positive impact on so many lives in the course he has taken. It is right to celebrate his baseball accomplishments, but Greg is much more than that, having given his time and shared his good fortune with so many. That high school baseball jacket was the best money I ever spent." - Joe Monaco, Hofstra Baseball (1981-85)
An outfielder on the baseball team from 1983 to 1986, Polli was an All-East Coast Conference selection in 1985 after batting .496, an average that ranked third in the nation. In addition to his batting average, Polli led the NCAA in RBIs per game at 2.07 and was sixth with 14 home runs.
He followed his terrific 1985 season with a .478 average, 12 home runs and 57 RBIs in 1986, earning second team All-America honors as well as All-ECC accolades. He also became the first player in East Coast Conference history to win the Triple Crown, as he led the league in average, home runs and RBIs. He also led the nation once again in RBIs per game with 1.90 per game.
In 1984 Polli was an All-Metropolitan Conference selection after batting .371 with 10 doubles, five home runs and 21 RBIs.
A three-year team captain, Polli's career average of .416 ranks seventh all-time in NCAA Division I. He also holds the third and seventh best RBIs per game totals in Division I as well.
His 31 career home runs are third on Hofstra's all-time list, while his 140 RBIs rank seventh on the career list for the Pride. The Hicksville, New York, native also holds the single season record for slugging percentage at Hofstra with a .950 mark in 1985 and was Hofstra's Athlete of the Year in 1986.
The Most Valuable Player of the Atlantic Coast Baseball League in 1985, Polli recorded a home run at Fenway Park during the league all-star game that season. After graduating from Hofstra Polli played for several minor league baseball teams, playing last with the San Jose Bees in the California League.
Currently the Vice President, Product Management and Global Sourcing for MSC Industrial Direct, Polli has been with the company for 25 years. He has served on the board of directors for many organizations with the industry including the Industrial Supply Manufacturers' Association (2000-03) and the Industrial Supply Association (2006-09). He also served as Chair of the Industrial Supply Association's Strategic Planning Committee from 2009 to 2010.
Polli also lends his time to charitable endeavors, serving as President of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) Board of Directors, Long Island Chapter for two years (2007-09). He has been a member of the JDRF Board since 2003 and is currently the Chairman of the Nominating Committee. Polli also serves as President of the George Polli Foundation, named after his late father. Through the Foundation's annual golf outing, more than $855,000 has been raised for the JDRF over the last 11 years.
A resident of Asharoken, New York, Polli and his wife, Christine, have three children - Alexandra, Christian and Gerard.
Our next Hall of Fame Spotlight: Norman Richardson, Men's Basketball
To purchase tickets to the 2013 Hall of Fame Dinner, please call James Barone at 516-463-6144 or click the Purchase Tickets link in the box above.