There’s nothing quite like your first time at a NCAA Regional in Oxford.
Naturally, I had high expectations coming into the regional, and thanks to everyone's advice, made it through.
This weekend at Swayze marked my first time seeing post-season college baseball live, and it definitely lived up the hype. While I would have liked a win last night to ease my nerves, that wouldn't be Ole Miss baseball. So now, Ole Miss is looking at a chance to advance to a Super Regional and the only thing in the way is Southern Miss. Cool!
The first game against the Golden Eagles started off so great, and I began to have sympathy for the USM pitcher, which to be fair was my first mistake. As I'm sure you all know, Ole Miss decided to absolutely sh*t the bed and gave up seven runs in a single inning.
I was sitting directly behind the USM dugout and was able to hear everything they would say coming out of the inning or when they scored a home run. My particular favorite was a player who would yell “house money” every time they scored a run. Super awesome to hear that 10 separate times.
It’s honestly pretty easy to hate Southern Miss. The one thing that is hard to deny is they traveled very well and were extremely loud. At some points in the game, it could have rivaled the Swayze crazies.
So far, Florida State wins for the best game of the tournament. I was on the edge of my seat the entire time. The student section was out of control and it seemed like every fan around me lost their voice. Even though there were no home runs, the students in right field took the liberty of throwing beer every time there was a big play, including the over-throw of Tim Elko to first base. I still will never get over that FSU threw the game away out of fear for a guy who literally has one ACL.
My first showers in right-field were none other than Tim Elko’s grand slam against Southeast Missouri in game one. Epic.
This might be controversial, but I actually don’t love sitting in right field. I didn't get there 12 hours before the game, but I also didn’t come late. I do understand why people love it so much, though. It really is a party the entire game. The main downside is that I can’t see the game. As much as I moved and tip-toed, I just couldn’t see over everyone. It really is a cool atmosphere, and if I got there earlier or maybe wasn’t as short as I am, I would be all in.
One personal highlight of the weekend in right field was everyone chanting “one more beer” at a certain offensive lineman as he easily finished off another cold one.
Due to my unnecessary fear of the stadium selling out of the fancy hot dogs before I could get my hands on some, I rushed to the opening game on Friday. As you can imagine the stadium wasn't very full, but there were already fans in left and right field waiting for the Rebels to play... five hours later.
But for those at home, I did it. I walked up to the woman at the counter and ignored the judgment as I asked for all four hot dogs. Not to be outdone by the stares of what seemed like every fan in the stadium as I found an empty seat and went to town.
There were some positive reactions from the fans. One older woman stopped me and told me that she watched my face for each hotdog that I ate to try and see which one got the most positive reaction. Slightly horrific to imagine lol. I know that most people can’t make it to Oxford on a whim, so please live vicariously through me.
POWER RANKINGS (Don’t @ me)
- Golden Eagle Dog
- Rebel Dog
- Redhawk Dog
- Seminole Dog (Doesn’t even deserve a spot but here ya go)
Win or lose today, the most important thing to remember is that our team doesn’t wear bright yellow Adidas jerseys, which is really all that matters.