Joe Dier retires at Mississippi State

Joe Dier, left, and Collegiate Baseball’s Lou Pavolich, Jr., at College World Series in Omaha. (Photo by Craig Jackson)

STARKVILLE, Miss. – After more than 30 years working in various capacities publicizing Mississippi State athletics, Joe Dier retired Monday from his position as Assistant Director of Media Relations.

Dier began his career at Mississippi State on Nov. 1, 1986, hired by athletic director Charlie Carr to serve as the primary media contact for every Bulldog sport. He was MSU’s third full-time sports information director, following Bob Hartley and Bo Carter.

A 1975 graduate of Mississippi State, Dier was the sports editor at the Starkville Daily News and Yazoo City Daily Herald before, in 1979, he began an eight-year stint as editor of Dawgs’ Bite, a weekly publication covering MSU athletics.

Dier served as the football publicist for head coach Rockey Felker’s teams from 1986

Joe Dier chats with Dog fans at Omaha. (Photo by Craig Jackson)

through 1990 and Jackie Sherrill’s first squad in 1991. In the summer of 1992, Dier was named the department’s director of auxiliary publications where he served again as editor of Dawgs’ Bite, then an in-house publication. In addition, Dier became the media relations contact for the baseball team. Dier continued with Dawgs’ Bite for four years before returning to full-time media relations work in 1996, adding responsibilities as the primary volleyball contact.

“Joe will always have a special place in my heart dating back to my days as a student assistant and as I began my career in media relations,” director of athletics Scott Stricklin said. “His friendship and advice have always been cherished, and I wish him and Kim all the best in retirement and look forward to seeing them around Starkville for years to come.”

Said Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and Museum executive director Rick Cleveland: “Joe is one of the really nice guys in Mississippi sports. I have enjoyed all our dealings over the years. He was always helpful, always had a smile and always wanted what was best for Mississippi State University.

“I know Joe would be the first to tell you he learned from one of the greatest: Bob Hartley.”

During his 22 seasons as baseball publicist, the Diamond Dogs advanced to the College World Series in Omaha four times, including a trip to the national finals in 2013. Dier served as media host for nine NCAA baseball regionals and one super regional and the Bulldogs won three Southeastern Conference baseball tournaments during his tenure.  He oversaw the publicity of 41 All-SEC honorees, 22 All-American selections, 12 Academic All-Americans, nine first-round draft picks and four Ferriss Trophy recipients.

“Joe was not only a first-class professional, but also a loyal friend to our staff and players throughout his career,” former head coach Ron Polk said. “He would always go over and above for our kids and the press, and he’d always have a smile on his face while doing it. I’m happy for him and wish him all the best in retirement.”

“It has been a pleasure to work with a man like Joe,” head baseball coach John Cohen said. “His friendship, experience and wisdom have been invaluable and true blessings for our entire staff. He will be sorely missed.”

Dier was named to the board of directors of the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) in 2005 and in 2008-09 served as the organization’s president. He is also a charter member of the MSU Chapter of the National Football Foundation & College Football Hall of Fame.

“I’m blessed to have been fortunate enough to have had Joe as our SID for four years as a player and to work will him for the last four seasons,” head volleyball coach Jenny Hazelwood said.

A native of Baton Rouge, La., Dier is the son of a career Air Force chaplain and traveled extensively in his youth, following family military assignments in Washington, British Columbia, Oregon, Alabama, Florida, Okinawa, Mississippi and Alaska.

He is married to the former Kim Monroe of Starkville and they are the parents of a son, Reed, a senior at Mississippi State.

A younger Joe Dier, left, with Bo Carter and Bob Hartley in the press box at Scott Field.

One thought on “Joe Dier retires at Mississippi State”

  1. Rick, thanks for the article yesterday summerizing Joe Dier’s career at MSU. Joe and I have been friends since I was a baseball GA in the early 80s and your article describes him to a T. Just as good of guy as you’ll find. I will miss seeing him at State. Hope all is well. Bill Baldner

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