The Ferriss: A celebration of Miss. baseball
Posted on: May 20,2014
Mike Bianco called Auston Bousfield the “total package,” and I’d say that’s about right.
Bousfield hit for average, he hit in the No. 2 hole because he handles the bat so well, he hit with pop, he led the best college league in America in hits, he fielded his position without an error for over two seasons, and he stole 16 of 17 bases. He helped Ole Miss win the Western Division of the SEC.
He deserved to win the C Spire Ferriss Trophy — and he did.
And that doesn’t stop a lot of people from tweeting, e-mailing and posting on message boards that another guy should have won.
Here’s the deal: There were five finalists in Jackson Monday for the Ferriss event and any of the five would have been worthy winners.
Bousfield won over four other Ferriss finalists, including pitcher-first baseman Tyler Akins of Belhaven, Ole Miss pitcher Chris Ellis and the Mississippi State pitching duo of Jacob Lindgren and Ross Mitchell.
All posted splendid numbers. Indeed, Lindgren’s nearly two strikeouts an inning as a relief pitcher pop the eyes right out of our heads.
And there are other players, who weren’t finalists, who would have been worthy winners. Mississippi college baseball was that good this season.
There seem so many misconceptions about the voting.
Preliminary voting was done by a panel of 24 experts, including Major League scouts and college coaches. They selected the five finalists. The same panel then voted again, accounting for 90 percent of the final vote. Ten percent of the final vote came from fan voting conducted by C Spire. Mitchell finished first in the fan voting.
There’s always going to be controversy. Last year, Hunter Renfroe won and many thought the winner should have been Bobby Wahl, the fine Friday night starter at Ole Miss, who finished with a 10-0 record and a 2.03 ERA.
It was much the same last season as this: Several deserving candidates, but only one can win.
There is no fix. There is no bias. There are a lot of great players.
And that’s what makes this award so special.
It’s like Mississippi State coach John Cohen pointed out. He coached college baseball in four other different states and he grew up in Alabama.
“This is a special award, named for a special person,” Cohen said of the C Spire Ferriss Trophy. “No other state has anything like this.”
We do. And we try always to get it right.