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Ferriss honored with state resolution

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Senator Buck Clarke presented the official resolution in honor of Coach David “Boo” Ferriss to his wife, Miriam Ferriss, on Nov. 13.

 

Delta State University’s baseball legend Coach David “Boo” Ferriss was recently honored by the Mississippi legislature through an official senate resolution.

On Nov. 13, Senator Buck Clarke and Delta State President William N. LaForge presented the resolution to his wife, Miriam Ferriss.

“This was a really special moment, and I am very humbled by the resolution,” said Miriam. “I appreciate Sen. Clarke and President LaForge taking the time to honor him in this way.”

Boo was a Boston Red Sox Hall of Famer and legendary coach of the Delta State Statesmen. He retired from Delta State after the 1988 season, but he spent the rest of his life as a Statesmen supporter before he passed away in November of 2016.

Ferriss was so revered in the state, that some called him the “Dean of Mississippi Baseball.”

“As much as he loved playing in the MLB, he was even happier coaching,” added Miriam. “That’s where his heart was. He loved the players he coached, and they loved him back. It was his greatest joy. He lived his dream, and I supported him in everything he wanted to do.”

Sen. Clarke said Boo was more than deserving of the recognition.

“One of the legislature’s ways of honoring those who have contributed so much to our state is by passing a resolution, which is much like a bill, that tells of their life and what sets them apart,” said Clarke. “This resolution is then entered into the Senate journal and thus is a permanent record for all time.”

“Personally delivering the resolution to Mrs. Ferriss was a special treat for me,” added Clarke. “Resolutions are usually handed to someone in the Capitol, maybe in a ceremony, and the legislature is then done with it. Mrs. Ferriss is such a gracious person, and it was an honor for President LaForge and me to visit her in her home. Coach Ferriss was truly a remarkable person, and a legendary Mississippian. If you ever met him, you would never forget him — just as he never forgot you.”

LaForge said he was honored to present the resolution directly to Miriam.

“In his resolution, passed by the state legislature, Sen. Buck Clarke captured the spirit of Coach Ferriss’s life and character,” said LaForge. “It is a very fitting tribute to a great man, and one of Delta State’s legends. What a pleasure it was to be there with Sen. Clarke when he delivered the resolution to Mrs. Ferriss.”

Learn more about Boo’s unparalleled career at http://www.clarionledger.com/story/sports/college/2016/11/24/legend-boo-ferriss-dies-thanksgiving-age-94/91616420.

Follow all Delta State news at www.deltastate.edu.

 

Baseball alumni reunite on campus

By | Alumni, Athletics | No Comments

A group of Delta State University baseball alumni recently gathered for a weekend of fun reunion activities on campus.

The group enjoyed lunch downtown with their former coach, the legendary Boo Ferriss, and his wife Miriam.

Chris Burgess '83 of Ridgeland, and Barry Lyons '84 of Ocean Springs, with former Statesmen baseball coach Boo Ferriss at The Warehouse in downtown Cleveland.

Chris Burgess ’83 of Ridgeland, and Barry Lyons ’84 of Ocean Springs, with former Statesmen baseball coach Boo Ferriss at The Warehouse in downtown Cleveland.

In between ballgames at Tim and Nancy Harvey Stadium-Ferriss Field, the former Statesmen and their families met at the Hugh Ellis Walker Alumni and Foundation House for food and fellowship provide by a former teammate and the National Alumni Association.

Director of Athletics Ronnie Mayers and Director of Alumni Affairs Jeffrey Farris updated the group on the exciting things happening on campus.

To stay up to date on the Alumni Association’s activities, follow these social media sites: Facebook (Statesmen Graduates), Twitter (@DSU_Alumni), Tumblr (http://www.dsualumni.tumblr.com), LinkedIn (DSU alumni), Instagram (dsualumni) and You Tube (dsualumni1). Save the date for this year’s Pig Pickin’ (Sept. 24) and Homecoming (Oct. 15).

Alumni Association hosts pregame social in Biloxi

By | Alumni, Athletics | No Comments

The Delta State Alumni Association recently hosted a pregame party before the Statesmen baseball team played William Carey Univeristy at MGM Park – Shuckers Stadium in Biloxi.

The social was held in the Mercedes Benz Club and appetizers were provided for guests. Over 100 alumni, friends and prospective students attended the event.

Jeffrey Farris ‘04/’05 (l to r), director of Alumni Affairs; Brett Walker ’05, Hancock Investment Services; Cristina Coca ’13, director of Community Relations at MGM Park.

Jeffrey Farris ‘04/’05 (l to r), director of Alumni Affairs; Brett Walker ’05, Hancock Investment Services; Cristina Coca ’13, director of Community Relations at MGM Park.

Delta State staff members in attendance were: Kara Talley and Sarah Shepherd, admissions recruiters; Jeffrey Farris, director of Alumni Affairs; and Keith Fulcher, executive director of Alumni-Foundation. Andrew “FoFo” Gilich, the mayor of Biloxi, also attended and welcomed the crowd to the Gulf Coast.

Delta State alumnus and former Statesmen Mark Graham ’83, of Dallas, Texas, threw out the first pitch to former teammate Steven Tomaszewski ’74, of Ocean Springs. The Statesmen defeated William Carey 4-1. The contest was part of a series of 27 college baseball games that will be played at MGM Park.

To view pictures from the event, visit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/dsualumni/albums/72157665909544436. To watch a video clip, visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3H7jp9XbZBo.

To stay up to date on the Alumni Association’s activities, follow these social media sites: Facebook (Statesmen Graduates), Twitter (@DSU_Alumni), Tumblr (http://www.dsualumni.tumblr.com), LinkedIn (DSU alumni), Instagram (dsualumni) and You Tube (dsualumni1). Save the date for this year’s Go Green Weekend (April 2), Pig Pickin’ (Sept. 24) and Homecoming (Oct. 15).

Coach Ferriss to be honored with statue

By | Alumni, Athletics, Community, Foundation | No Comments

Delta State University and the Department of Athletics are erecting a statue in honor of legendary baseball Coach Dave “Boo” Ferriss in recognition of his decades of commitment to the Green and White.

The life-size statue, created by renowned Mississippi artist Kim Sessums, will feature Ferriss in his Delta State uniform and will be placed behind the grandstand at the baseball complex named in his honor. The statue dedication is scheduled for this Saturday, Oct. 3 at 2 p.m.

Athletic Director Ronnie Mayers said the statue is an appropriate way to pay tribute to a coach who had an illustrious career at Delta State.

“As a friend of Delta State University Athletics, you already know the impact that Coach Ferriss has had on the Delta State baseball program, and also for the game on the state, regional and national levels,” said Mayers. “What truly makes this man worthy of having a statue erected on the Delta State campus is reflected in the time he has always taken to know his players and fans so well — something he has continued to do in the years since he last hung up his uniform.”

Ferriss retired from Delta State following the 1988 season, but he continues to be a tireless supporter at all levels of baseball throughout the state and especially for his beloved Statesmen.

While he is known locally as the legendary Statesmen baseball, Ferriss also became a Boston Red Sox Hall of Famer.

The Shaw, Miss. native spent 46 years in baseball on the collegiate and professional levels, including 26 seasons at Delta State. A legend in national collegiate baseball coaching circles, Ferriss was inducted into the American Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 1988 in Atlanta, Ga.

He compiled a 639-387-8 record at Delta State, and his coaching record ranks him among all-time national coaching leaders at the NCAA Division II level. His 1988 team was ranked 9th nationally in the Collegiate Baseball poll.

When Ferriss took over the DSU baseball program in 1960, he started it from the ground level. The Statesmen played many of their games off campus and Ferriss coached without the benefit of an assistant. He directed teams to the NCAA Division II Playoffs in eight of his last 12 years, including three trips to the NCAA Division II championships where the Statesmen finished third, second and third respectively in 1977, 1978 and 1982.

Gulf South Conference championships came in 1978, 1979, 1985 and 1988, with the Statesmen finishing second in 1981 and third in 1982. Forty-nine of his players earned All-Gulf South Conference honors.

Ferriss also earned several honors for his coaching accomplishments. In 1988, he received the United States Baseball Federation Service Award for his contributions to the game. He was named NCAA Regional Coach of the Year three times while also earning Gulf South Conference coaching honors three times.

In 1978 and 1982 he was selected as College Baseball Coach of the Year in Mississippi and was runner-up in that category in 1985.

In 2007, University Archivist Emily Jones helped pay tribute to Ferriss’s remarkable career by establishing The Dave “Boo” Ferriss Museum, which is housed inside the Robert L. Crawford Center adjacent to the baseball field.

“This statue is really going to tie everything together,” said Jones. “It will let everyone know right where they are — at the field named in his honor, the museum to the side and now the statue. Everyone is going to feel welcomed.”

Mayers encouraged fans and Delta State supporters to take part in the community effort to raise money for the statue fund.

“We invite you to be a part of this momentous occasion by contributing to the Ferriss Statue Fund,” said Mayers. “Along with your donation, we encourage you to jot down a fond memory to be shared with coach and Mrs. Ferriss.

“Coach Ferriss has given us more than 55 years of service and memories here at Delta State. Don’t miss this opportunity to support this overdue tribute and to share in honoring this legendary coach and man.”

To donate to the Coach Dave “Boo” Ferriss Statue Fund, visit https://www.deltastategiving.org/Fund/Give/678. For more information, contact the Delta State University Foundation 662-846-4704.