To The Top with Jon Gilbert
TO THE TOP
… TAKE ME OUT TO THE BALLGAME … TAKE ME TO THE TOP …
As the story goes, two gentleman named Jack Norworth and Albert Von Tilver wrote the song “Take Me Out to the Ball Game.“ Norworth got the thought for the song as he was riding a subway and saw a sign that said “Baseball Today.” The song was first sung at a high school baseball game in 1934, and later that year, it appeared during the World Series.
The song would later receive accolades as one of the 365 top “Songs of the Century” by the National Endowment of the Arts. Since that time, the song has been sung by millions and millions of fans, and it might rightly be considered the anthem for baseball in the United States. In turn, it has earned its own special place, being traditionally sung during the middle of the seventh inning – the seventh inning stretch.
Since my arrival on campus on February 27th, I’ve had the opportunity to sing that song over 25 times at our Golden Eagles Baseball games – as I happened to walk-in on Coach Scott Berry’s Championship Season.
This has me thinking about our own traditions at Southern Miss – we have our own Roost, filled with many of the finest outdoor chefs in the country. We have our own diesel horn that goes off for Southern Miss home runs. We have our own boot that lovingly signals an error by the visiting team, and my personal favorite – the kids going out to join our Student-Athletes for the National Anthem.
We live in America! We love our Baseball! We love our own Southern Miss Baseball! It’s Awesome!
With this in mind, here’s a few items I’d like to share about our own team:
Coach Scott Berry and his staff (Chad Caillet, Michael Federico, B.A. Vollmuth and Collin Cargill) have embodied our Guiding Principles at every turn – Respect, Positive Energy, Focus, Excellence, Collaboration, and Honor.
We have 34 players on the roster from 11 states (AL, AR, CA, FL, GA, IL, LA, MN, MO, TX, and the great state of Mississippi) and 1 player from Guatemala.
We are regular season C-USA Champions; which is our first out-right title since 2003.
The Golden Eagles finished with the most regular season wins in program history (44).
We have averaged over 3,200 fans over 28 home games. The best anywhere!
Our team is currently ranked 11th in the D1Baseball.com poll.
Best of all – our STUDENT-Athletes are winning in the classroom, as they have carried a 3.0 Grade Point Average for the year.
Please note that the C-USA Tournament begins Wednesday, May 24th in Biloxi.
Southern Miss will be the #1 seed.
Hope to see you there! I’ll be singing the song – with you!
Take me out to the ballgame! Take me … To the Top!