Then there were three

by

With Mississippi State’s 4-1 victory against Memphis on Tuesday, Ron Polk’s tenure as the Bulldogs’ skipper was reduced to three games.

In today’s newspaper, I had a column on how different age groups will view Polk’s legacy.

Now I pose the question to you. How do you define Polk’s legacy, and what are some of your favorite Polk memories?

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35 Responses to “Then there were three”

  1. bigdraws Says:

    Polk is a great teacher. He’s the definition of a baseball coach to me. The last few years aside he’s had a great run at MSU. According to GG’s article I shouldn’t understand his legacy, because I’m only 31. But I grew up playing in right field under those old cedar trees. My parents and their friends would grill out while we played cupball on those long Saturday double-headers. I remember the 85 team well. Particularly when Thigpen blasted a homerun and all the kids went running after the ball. Polk created this atmosphere for us. There’s still no place that comes close to it for me. I’ll try to forget about this year and pretend like it ended last year. In front of 14k. I was lucky enough to go to both SR games last year. 9:00 on a Friday morning and the bleachers were already packed. That’s how I remember the Polk era.

  2. jaybirdms Says:

    Somebody get draws a kleenex.

    I’ll probably remember the 85 CWS team that let the game against Miami slip away. If not for that, who knows what could have happened. I’ll also remember the surprising runs to win the SEC Tourney against LSU and then a few years later against Ole Miss.

    The 97 Regional wins against Washingon were pretty exciting as well.

    I’ll remember Polk as a classic baseball coach, who got too wrapped up in a crusade against the NCAA.

  3. Jimmy Barbee Says:

    I am proud to see that some of the dawg supporters are giving Coach Polk great achievements for his career at MS. One losing season should not spoil all the other success that Coach Polk has accomplished.

  4. jaybirdms Says:

    Draws, I was also there playing behind the outfield fence, although not nearly enough. Only went regularly to games for about 3 years. It was mostly because of him that there was so much activity back there.

  5. Braves Dawg Says:

    I always loved to see the smoke rising from left field while walking up to the field.

  6. theconquistador2 Says:

    Well I’m 27 and I grew up going to Dudy Noble. I had fun when I was a kid and I have fun going today and I will continue to enjoy going in the future.

    In all honesty, Polk’s legacy to me is what I’ve been told it is. I remember nothing about THE TEAM (1985), only from what I see on highlight reels or what I hear from my dad and others. Our last SEC Championship was won when I was 8 years old and I remember almost nothing about it. Really the only thing I can remember is that Jody Hurst and Pete Young were on the team.

    MSU and Polk’s hayday was in the 80’s and early to mid 90’s and he’s continued to live off of that success. Since then, we’ve been just an average SEC baseball team. Sure in the past 15 or so years we’ve been to the CWS, Regionals, Super Regionals and SEC Tourney Champs and that’s more than most programs can even dream about. But you know what? Many other teams in the SEC have done the same. Since 1990 the SEC has had 34 teams in the CWS (four of those are by MSU). Since 2000 MSU, Arkansas, UF, UGA (3), LSU (3), USC (3) and UT (2) have been to the CWS.

    Hopefully our next coach can take us to that next level, so I can tell my 4 month old son about him as I was told about Polk.

    A memory of Polk that sticks out in my mind is when I was 12 and I was at MSU’s baseball camp. We were taking infield and Polk was walking around teaching how to field a ground balls properly and he never took the foot long cigar out of his mouth.

  7. bigdraws Says:

    There you have it GG. I guess the cut-off line is somewhere between 27-31 years of age.

  8. Gregg Ellis Says:

    That’s what I expected, draws, with a few exceptions.

  9. 83dawg Says:

    Gregg are they expecting large crowds this weekend?

  10. theconquistador2 Says:

    It would be great if there was a large crowd Saturday for Polk. But I think Saturday’s game is on TV, so that may hurt a little.

  11. bigdraws Says:

    I know one reporter who won’t be there. But I figure it’ll be between 6-7k. I’m gonna do my part, though. I’m gonna suffer through all 3 games.

  12. jaybirdms Says:

    Somebody needs to take away his press credentials.

  13. jaybirdms Says:

    Should we “blather” here today?

  14. dadawg Says:

    I think MSU fans will measure Ron Polk by the coaches and teams that follow him. Time has a way of telling how great coaches, presidents or even sports writers really are…
    Should have stopped with two columns IMHO…this one sounds a little Farleyesque…heh

  15. jaybirdms Says:

    Nah. Farley couldn’t have written that. Too many big words like, “firsthand” and “borderline”. Plus, he prolly didn’t giggle like a little girl when he typed “sects”.

  16. Gregg Ellis Says:

    Trust me, I’ve seen a lot of MSU baseball the last 20 years. I think they can proceed without me this weekend.

    Farleyesque? That’s a new one.

  17. Gregg Ellis Says:

    LOL, birds.

  18. jaybirdms Says:

    thx, greggs.

  19. dadawg Says:

    “demographic cluster” in a sports column?

  20. Gregg Ellis Says:

    Keeping you on your toes

  21. maroon3 Says:

    I will remember Coach Polk as an outstanding coach and leader. I am 35 and remember the 85 team, the 94 team and the 07 team. I am not a numbers person, but I do remember players and big wins from those years along with many others. I can’t make it to Starkville this weekend, but my 2-year old is going to see the 1 Dawg one last time.

  22. farley662 Says:

    I will remember Polk as the guy who quit on us then took UGA to the CWS. I will remember him for making the latter half of this season for getting tossed and making the game more about him than the players. I will remember him for making everything he does more about him than our beloved school. At this point, I’d rather just forget him.

  23. bedgood Says:

    I am 38, grew up in the real Brandon, Ms, now live in Lafayette, La, a season ticket holder and will be making the trip back this weekend to make sure he leaves. I got to Starkville in 1988 with the remnants of the 85 team still lingering over the Dude. (it will never be polk-dement stadium to me!) The SEC Tourny was still traveling around the members stadiums, those were great tournaments also, where Polk would be walking around the grandstand when we were not playing, sitting in the press box smoking a stogie, and later telling some beat writer form the clarion-lyer (it was really Cleveland and he was no beat writer) that as long as his name was on the outfield fence he would smoke his cigars wherever he wanted!! Classic.

    He is the reason why we all have so found memories of the Dude and Mississippi State Baseball. Because of him and Skip and VERY few others, college baseball is what it is today. The other 10 SEC members took our collective lead, Mississippi State and Polk were first and then LSU hired Skip. It is fitting that Polk and Skip have a tied record against each other.

    But I will also remember Polk for sending runners home and getting thrown out by a mile, for going into an inning up by 4 or 6 runs and leaving a pitcher in too long and losing the ball game because pitchers were “Fragile”, for recruiting blue chippers that get drafted and then have to sign less talent because LSU, Alabama, Florida and Georgia have already signed the ones we passed on.

    With the bad there is the good. Burke Masters, Pete Young, Papelbon, the smoke out of the out beyond the outfield fence. As for him leaving, he has already chosen his replacement once, this time it should be our turn. My choices are Cohen (UK Head Coach) or Godwin (LSU 3rd base coach).

  24. Gregg Ellis Says:

    Farley, I guess that was farleyesque.

  25. farley662 Says:

    Unlike draws, I’m not much for being all emotional.

  26. bigdraws Says:

    LOL!!! So says the guy who gets kicked out of every sporting event he goes too.

  27. Gregg Ellis Says:

    As long as he’s having a little fun, there’s no really danger of getting tossed.

  28. 2thdoc Says:

    I will remember Polk last year and the Regionals at Dudy Noble for the rest of my life sitting next to my Dad. If you remember, Polk made all the right calls and pitching changes up to the CWS and pulled out the miracle finish to get there. I am thankful for that lasting image of MSU Baseball

    For the past few years though, he had become more of an individual persona than MSU representative and I’m just glad he knows to call it quits rather than take on 2 jobs at the same time. Most likely with unequal passion for each one(MSU and NCAA). The Georgia thing did leave a bad taste for me but he deserves much praise for his body of work.

    I don’t hold it against him so much that he wants Raffo as his replacement when nobody else wants him. It is more of a farewell wish to his friend in Raffo that he probably knows won’t get the nod. I think he knows that Byrne cares less about Polk’s input into the decision than LT might in the same situation. Ready to see some excitement back in MSU baseball with a new young coach…as long as it’s not Raffo.

  29. methuselah1933 Says:

    jus try dank what year dat ws us ol apes have trouble keep up with time

  30. Top Posts « WordPress.com Says:

    […] Then there were three With Mississippi State’s 4-1 victory against Memphis on Tuesday, Ron Polk’s tenure as the Bulldogs’ […] […]

  31. farley662 Says:

    I have been thrown out of much better places than this!

  32. thespear Says:

    i can see where farley’s comin from,
    but i think Polk’s personal flavor he adds to the game is one of the reasons for his success. He may be an ornery fella, but coaches who seemed to tell it like it is always receive respect from their team. Polks flavor and the fact that he has baseball down to a science(i think polk teaches like 21 diff ways to hit) has led to his great success and colorful career!

  33. Gregg Ellis Says:

    I didn’t mean the blog, Farley. Nor any place in particular. LOL!

  34. nashdawg Says:

    I will remember Coach Polk from my years in college during the years at the old stadium at DNF. Sitting in those bleachers behind 3rd base…eating a #2 Sonic Burger with a M&M Sonic Blast on those Tuesday afternoons. Watching Will the Thrill jack one out to hit the scoreboard, …Palmerio, Brantley, Thigpen, Gator Thieson, Roark McDonald, Dan Van Cleve, Gene Morgan, John Scott, etc… Did you guys knw that Will Clark never made the SEC All-Tournament Team?

  35. bigdraws Says:

    Met John Scott earlier this year. Good guy.

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