Some random USM notes for your Thursday evening:
* BASEBALL: Southern Miss sophomore outfielder Mason Robbins was named third-team preseason All-American by Baseball America today.
Robbins is set for a big season after batting .330 with three home runs and 38 RBI during his freshman campaign.
The USM baseball season starts on Feb. 15 with a three-game series against Missouri in Hattiesburg.
Never miss a local story.
* PRESIDENT: The Southern Miss president search appears to be nearing an end, and an announcement could happen by early next week (possibly Monday).
Speculation surrounds a group of three men as the final candidates for the job:
# Stephen Doblin, Lamar University provost - According to his Lamar bio, Doblin is the vice president of academic affairs. Doblin, who is a former faculty member at USM, attended the University of Alabama.
# Rodney Bennett, University of Georgia vice president of student affairs - He previously served as UGA's Dean of Students and Interim Associate Provost for Institutional Diversity.
# Joe Paul, USM vice president of student affairs - He has served more than three decades as a USM student affairs administrator.
* BASKETBALL: The USM men's basketball team didn't play last night, but it received a nice boost in the RPI rankings.
According to CBS Sports, USM (17-4) sits at 36th overall in the RPI.