I woke up this morning and I still can't believe it - our Mississippi State Bulldogs will play for a baseball national championship starting Monday. Thank you Diamond Dawgs for giving MSU fans the chance to experience this great journey with you.
UCLA will join State in the championship series. There's no way this could mean as much to them as it does to us. They've won countless basketball national championships, they even played in this series three years ago. It wouldn't mean the same to Alabama fans, Florida, Ohio State, Texas, USC. It didn't mean the same to Georgia when they made it in 2008. This is a truly special moment in the history of Mississippi State athletics.
For the first time in our history, MSU will play for a national championship (in a team sport). What's more - this is the sport in which we've always hung our hat on. After years of success and tradition, the only thing missing was a national championship - or at least playing for one as this team has already accomplished. It's only right that baseball is the first sport to get to this point.
So many folks are rooting for us to win it all. I believe the entire SEC has our back here. Even some Ole Miss fans are happy for Mississippi State. This is a chance to put the state of Mississippi on the map, winning the first consensus Division I national championship in the history of the state. (Ole Miss won a NCAA recognized football national title in 1960, but they shared it with Minnesota)
I'm only 29 years old, so my story of endless years pulling for State doesn't go back as far as so many Bulldogs who this means even more to. I think of folks like my dad, my uncle, my father-in-law who have been such loyal MSU supporters for years and years and never had this opportunity. The 1996 basketball team was very close, but they didn't make it to the game. It's incredible to think about all the years of standing by this program waiting for this moment and it's finally here.
On the flip side, there is my four month old daughter who will surely expect her Bulldogs to make it this far every year. Hopefully she isn't spoiled as young folks can get, ha.
Enjoy this moment State fans. Cherish every minute of where we are this weekend. Wear maroon as much as you can and throw out some "Hail State's". This chance may not come around for a very long time so don't take it for granted. Hail State!