C-USA Coaches anticipate even stronger
DESTIN, Fla. - The new-look membership of Conference USA beginning in 2005 should strengthen the league's national standing in baseball while initially weakening it in basketball. C-USA football shouldn't take a dramatic hit.
That's the general view of league coaches and others who were interviewed at the annual C-USA spring meeting here.
New members Central Florida, Marshall, Rice, SMU, Tulsa and UTEP will join current members East Carolina, Houston, Memphis, Southern Miss, Tulane and UAB to form a 12-team, all-sports conference in 2005.
Commissioner Britton Banowsky said he likes the future lineup because all the schools want to be in it. "All the programs coming in are really, really happy to be in. It's great when people want to be together," he said.
C-USA baseball, despite having only nine members when play begins in 2005, should make an immediate impact nationally. The league will boast powerful collegiate baseball programs in Rice, the 2003 College World Series winner, as well as perenial powers Southern Miss, ECU, Houston and Tulane. Baseball, in fact, could become C-USA's best sport.
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2003 C-USA Champions
Corky Palmer (768-378)
8th Season ('04)
Names & Numbers
News & Media
2003 68,398 24 2,137 24 25-7
2002 68,642 23 2,080 23 24-9
2001 60,339 21 2,081 21 16-13
2000 63,846 19 1,935 19 23-11
1999 51,572 22 1,719 22 27-3
1998 63,784 15 2,058 15 20-13
1997 67,999 11 2,194 14 23-8
1996 74,738 13 1,967 10 26-12
1995 71,342 11 2,098 12 27-7
1994 62,542 10 1,895 12 21-12
1993 46,536 9 1,724 9 19-10
Did you know...
The C-USA Baseball Tournament will return to Pete Taylor Park in 2005
2004 Spring Signees
Rob Burns (5-10, 185, P,
Tuscaloosa, AL /Shelton State CC)
Cole Besinger (6-2, 195, LHP,
Minette, AL/Faulkner State CC)
Matt Caire (6-0, 210, LHP,
Luling, LA/Delgado CC)
Damian Dalfrey (6-2, 210, RHP,
Bo Davis (6-0, 175, OF,
Meridian, MS/West Lauderdale HS)
Jacob Fowler (5-11, 185, OF,
Tuscaloosa, AL/Bevill State CC)
Jonathan Johnston (6-2, 190, RHP,
Jackson, MS/Northwest Rankin HS)
Patrick Maxwell (5-11, 190, INF,
Shreveport, LA/Evangelical Christian)
Bradley Owen (6-5, 215, LHP,
Semmes, AL/Pensacola JC)
Tyler Perrett (6-4, 210, RHP,
Hazleton, MS/Copiah-Lincoln CC)
David Steele (6-2, 190, OF,
Mandeville, LA/Mandeville HS)
Trey Sutton (6-0, 170, INF,
Laurel, MS/West Jones HS)
Ben Wade (6-2, 180, RHP,
Eatonville, MS/North Forrest HS).
#9 Ole Miss falls to intrastate rival Southern Miss
April 5, 2005 was a historic night at The Pete. A record number of fans piled into Pete Taylor Park Tuesday night, and the ones who stayed until the end were well-rewarded.
The University of Southern Mississippi baseball team defeated the University of Mississippi 10-9 when Golden Eagle senior Beau Griffin hit a one-out, three-run home run in the bottom of the ninth inning. The home run was the final part of a four-run ninth-inning comeback for Southern Miss.
The win, USM's 11th straight, came in front of a crowd of 5,377 fans, eclipsing the old mark by more than 600. The previous record crowd was 4,760, to see Mississippi State play Southern Miss last season. Southern Miss' game with Ole Miss last year also set the record at the time, with what is now the third-largest crowd of 4,673.
"I looked down that right-field line, and there was no place to sit," Southern Miss senior Brad Willcutt said. "The crowd was just great, especially there in the ninth inning when we got some guys on. They just helped us out."