Leon Decides Bowling Green Is The Right Fit

Bruce Hefflinger
PBR Michigan Senior Writer

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Leon Decides Bowling Green Is The Right Fit

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Preston Leon

Class of 2021 / SS

Player Information

  • Graduating Class: 2021
  • Primary Position: SS
    Secondary Position: 2B
  • High School: Dakota
    State: MI
  • Summer Team: South Oakland A's-Lelli
  • Height: 5-10
    Weight: 170lbs
  • Bat/Throw: R/R


INF Velo

Leon Decides Bowling Green Is The Right Fit

MACOMB - Preston Leon thought he had his college decision zeroed in on a pair of Mid-American Conference schools. But with the help of a friend, his future changed.

“I thought I had it narrowed down to Northern Illinois and Akron,” the Dakota senior reflected. “But I’m good friends with Nic Good. I played with him from the age of eight to 15 and he recently committed to Bowling Green. Nic reached out to (head) coach (Kyle) Hallock and mentioned me. I sent a text to coach Hallock and the next weekend I visited BG and Akron on the same day to compare.”

The unofficial visits helped in the final decision, bringing an end to the recruiting process of the 60th-rated 2021 in Michigan.

“Honestly I had my questions where I fit into this when it started, D-2 or D-I,” Leon admitted. “Before covid a few D-I schools reached out but covid slowed the whole process down.”

Nerves entered the picture as well with no spring baseball season.

“Over the spring and early summer I was getting kind of worried,” Leon related. “But my coaches and my dad just kept telling me to be calm. Once I got back out there playing and got out some video to the coaches I stopped worrying.”

Still, the process was different than expected.

“I thought it would be a little faster moving,” Leon said. “I didn’t get offers until junior year and that was from junior colleges. It probably would have been faster moving if covid didn’t shut it down.”

During that time, Leon “hit every day and went to the field with my dad and younger brother.”

The work paid off with an improved game.

“I’ve gotten a lot faster,” Leon pointed out. “Last year I was in the 6.9-7.0 range in the 60 and I’m down to 6.6-6.7 this year. I play football as well and the speed really helps.

“Switch-hitting has also been big for me this year. My average has really gone up. I’ve also hit more home runs this year. I’m just seeing the ball better.”

The ability to hit from both sides of the plate is appealing to BG.

“He likes that I’m a switch-hitter and he likes my speed,” Leon said of Hallock, the first-year head coach at Bowling Green. “Those are the two maing things he talked about.”

Selecting BG came after giving strong consideration to Northern Illinois and Akron.

“Akron offered two days before Bowling Green,” Leon noted. “I was also supposed to have a call with Northern Illinois to talk about an offer. But when I saw the BG campus and, in talking to the coaches, I really liked that place. Coach Hallock seems like a really good guy and I like the coaching staff a lot.”

While a school is now known, where Leon plays with the Falcons is an uncertainty.

“I can play all over the infield,” the 11th-ranked 2021 shortstop in the state noted. “I’m a middle infielder now, but I can play third base and outfield. I can play all over.”

The 5-10 170-pounder points to his performance in the field as an area that he is looking to continue making strides.

“I want to be reliable on defense,” Leon said. “I pride myself on being a good defender and I want to be reliable wherever they put out there.”

A 3.1 student looking at a major in business with real estate work in his future plans, Leon believes he can bring a significant amount to the BG program.

“I’m a really good kid that has a high character,” Leon said. “I’m a reliable player and think I can get it done in the classroom and on the baseball field.”

His father, Robert, has been his biggest influence.

“My dad has always worked with me a lot,” Leon noted. “He’s really been involved in my baseball career with BP and ground balls. He’s the main person that’s helped me out.”

The reward is a scholarship to Bowling Green.

“It’s been a goal of mine for so long and now to accomplish this, it just feels so good,” Leon said of the D-I commitment. “It’s not the end, though, there’s more to accomplish. But it sure feels good to get to this point.”