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#1 2019-06-03 15:10:36 - The state of the Southern Miss baseball program

Bleacher Eagle (10)
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Registered: 2018-07-18
Posts: 30

The state of the Southern Miss baseball program

Where do you rank the Southern Miss Baseball program nationally?
Are you happy with where it ranks?
If not, do you think Scott Berry is going to be able to elevate the program to the level you think is achievable?
What suggestions do you have for things that need to be done in order to elevate the program?

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#2 2019-06-03 17:14:16 - The state of the Southern Miss baseball program

Nugget's Ghostbuster (1033)
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From: U.S. Department of Interior
Registered: 2017-08-25
Posts: 3,830

Re: The state of the Southern Miss baseball program

You probably need to let the emotions of the last 24 hours pass before getting a completely unbiased answer. I would say we are not a top 30 nationally ranked program just based on winning a down CUSA and beating a middle of the road AZ St program twice. Top 40 is more accurate. This was a great ending to a season that was completely inconsistent where we underachieved. If you give credit to Berry for running the CUSA tournament and getting in his fourth consecutive NCAA you have to also give him credit for his efforts with losing three of our last series, two against teams with losing records, that put us in a must win situation at the end. You can also add terrible series against FIU, UTSA and South Alabama.

A fair assessment would be to apply where our program is today compared to schools like Houston, ECU and Louisville, for example. If the results of 10 years of Scott Berry were applied at those comparable institutions he would no longer be employed at any of those programs. In fact, Berry should have been released in 2015 after missing his fourth straight regional.

Can Scott Berry take us to the next level? I have 10 years of results that say no. If you want next level, it actually starts with our new AD and setting a new expectation that winning a poor conference and making a regional isn't enough. Lucky Charm told him it was enough under his watch, and even gave him a new contract after missing 4 tourneys in a row.

You need to treat baseball like you treated football in the state of Mississippi prior to the creation of CUSA. We should be getting every single kid with talent that the SEC just doesnt have enough room for. Marrchant Kenney said it best when he was recruited by USM. If you don't get an offer from a top SEC program, you go to Southern Miss to prove them wrong.

Berry is complacent at 57 years old riding out this low pressure gig that pays him six figures living in a low cost state like MS. He isn't a young, hungry, want to make some noise guy that is going to catch top programs off guard. He is like all these older coaches that have that entitlement syndrome simply based on number of years, not number of national wins and regional skins on the wall.

He is the Jeff Bower of baseball. He will get you a CUSA title and make a bowl game, but you won't see him progressing a program to a top 20 power.


"Pressure washers are great for removing deep-seated dirt, grease, peeling paint and even graffiti from concrete, asphalt, siding, decks, lawn furniture, garbage cans, boats and trailers, and outdoor power equipment." - Jon Dilbert, ECU AD

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#3 2019-06-03 21:06:55 - The state of the Southern Miss baseball program

AndreWhere (888)
Member
From: Dunwoody, GA
Registered: 2017-08-24
Posts: 6,841

Re: The state of the Southern Miss baseball program

This year's team probably belongs in "Others Receiving Votes" territory, but near the top of that list.

It was a weird season. Going in, I thought they had less talent than last year. They achieved more, and did so despite really bad defensive play. WTF do you conclude from that?

Berry has shown his ceiling and it's not very high. He's not going to suddenly improve in year 11 or 12.

As for the program, there are something like 70 other teams with multiple CWS appearances. Rice, Tulane, Western Michigan, and Georgia Southern are in that number.

Are they better programs? USM sure outdraws all of them. One could make the case that a relatively large number of USM fans are OK with a relatively mediocre product. Or they're just loyal... although I fear that loyalty is often tied to personal feelings about the head coach of any given sport.


Bring back Reed V. "Pie" TurkPalmer Eustachy.

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#4 2019-06-03 21:27:40 - The state of the Southern Miss baseball program

Nugget's Ghostbuster (1033)
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From: U.S. Department of Interior
Registered: 2017-08-25
Posts: 3,830

Re: The state of the Southern Miss baseball program

We are probably on par with Stony Brook and behind Dallas Baptist since Berry took over......and if the Berry lovers think that’s a good place to be because he is one of us then we are exactly where we are suppose to be.....

Has little to do with facilities or crappy conference participation trophies....it has to do with getting and developing talent. Berry was gifted Gabe Montenegro by USF and gifted Wallner because another program folded up. You take those two gifts that were given to Scott Berry without any effort and you don’t have a CUSA tourney title and you don’t have a regional this year.


"Pressure washers are great for removing deep-seated dirt, grease, peeling paint and even graffiti from concrete, asphalt, siding, decks, lawn furniture, garbage cans, boats and trailers, and outdoor power equipment." - Jon Dilbert, ECU AD

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#5 2019-06-04 07:12:55 - The state of the Southern Miss baseball program

tg300 (412)
Member
Registered: 2017-08-25
Posts: 1,104

Re: The state of the Southern Miss baseball program

Top priority is getting the field fixed where we can even be considered for a regional again.

We could have been ranked top 10 this year and would not have been considered as a host site.

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#6 2019-06-04 09:27:29 - The state of the Southern Miss baseball program

AndreWhere (888)
Member
From: Dunwoody, GA
Registered: 2017-08-24
Posts: 6,841

Re: The state of the Southern Miss baseball program

tg300 wrote:

Top priority is getting the field fixed where we can even be considered for a regional again.

We could have been ranked top 10 this year and would not have been considered as a host site.

Seems like we hear about this drainage shit every few years. Never noticed it anywhere else. If I were Bennett, I think I'd tell people interviewing for the AD job, "if I hear about drainage, you're in trouble."


Bring back Reed V. "Pie" TurkPalmer Eustachy.

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#7 2019-06-04 16:25:34 - The state of the Southern Miss baseball program

Bleacher Eagle (10)
Member
Registered: 2018-07-18
Posts: 30

Re: The state of the Southern Miss baseball program

Nugget's Ghostbuster wrote:

You probably need to let the emotions of the last 24 hours pass before getting a completely unbiased answer. I would say we are not a top 30 nationally ranked program just based on winning a down CUSA and beating a middle of the road AZ St program twice. Top 40 is more accurate. This was a great ending to a season that was completely inconsistent where we underachieved. If you give credit to Berry for running the CUSA tournament and getting in his fourth consecutive NCAA you have to also give him credit for his efforts with losing three of our last series, two against teams with losing records, that put us in a must win situation at the end. You can also add terrible series against FIU, UTSA and South Alabama.

A fair assessment would be to apply where our program is today compared to schools like Houston, ECU and Louisville, for example. If the results of 10 years of Scott Berry were applied at those comparable institutions he would no longer be employed at any of those programs. In fact, Berry should have been released in 2015 after missing his fourth straight regional.

Can Scott Berry take us to the next level? I have 10 years of results that say no. If you want next level, it actually starts with our new AD and setting a new expectation that winning a poor conference and making a regional isn't enough. Lucky Charm told him it was enough under his watch, and even gave him a new contract after missing 4 tourneys in a row.

You need to treat baseball like you treated football in the state of Mississippi prior to the creation of CUSA. We should be getting every single kid with talent that the SEC just doesnt have enough room for. Marrchant Kenney said it best when he was recruited by USM. If you don't get an offer from a top SEC program, you go to Southern Miss to prove them wrong.

Berry is complacent at 57 years old riding out this low pressure gig that pays him six figures living in a low cost state like MS. He isn't a young, hungry, want to make some noise guy that is going to catch top programs off guard. He is like all these older coaches that have that entitlement syndrome simply based on number of years, not number of national wins and regional skins on the wall.

He is the Jeff Bower of baseball. He will get you a CUSA title and make a bowl game, but you won't see him progressing a program to a top 20 power.

I think we are pretty much in agreement on most things.

Where do you rank the Southern Miss Baseball program nationally? 
Probably around 40th. We just haven't had enough post season success to be ranked any higher. One Regional title in history just isn't anything special.

Are you happy with where it ranks?
No. I would like to see us rise to at least 30th thru more post season success. I think it would be damn near impossible to get much higher than 30th while we're stuck in CUSA.

If not, do you think Scott Berry is going to be able to elevate the program to the level you think is achievable?
No. At this point, I think we've seen the ceiling with Berry.

What suggestions do you have for things that need to be done in order to elevate the program?
A few things:
1. I know this is a broken record, but we've got to get out of CUSA. Either get into the American or reform a new conference with a combination of CUSA/Sunbelt schools. There is some serious baseball potential with either option.
2. We need to improve our facilities, especially from a player's amenities perspective. Lafayette just spent like $17 million on their baseball stadium. La Tech is about to get a new stadium. Tulane has better facilities. We have got to invest to keep up with the Jones.
3. This conference is too weak to not play a tough OOC schedule. We won 2/3rds of our conference games, yet our RPI still wasn't good enough for an at-large bid, thus we had to win the conference tournament. We need to schedule better non-conference series. Playing State, Ole Miss, USA is a good base, but teams like Purdue, Gonzaga, Holy Cross don't move the needle for fans/recruits nor do they prepare the team for post season or boost the RPI. We need to get more regional caliber teams added to the schedule. 

I think all 3 of these things will help with recruiting, which in baseball is ultimately what determines success.

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#8 2019-06-04 17:57:00 - The state of the Southern Miss baseball program

Nugget's Ghostbuster (1033)
Member
From: U.S. Department of Interior
Registered: 2017-08-25
Posts: 3,830

Re: The state of the Southern Miss baseball program

Good post, Bleacher.

I don’t see conference being an obstacle especially in baseball. Dunwoody gave us a list of teams that have made the CWS that are from conferences equal or dare I say lesser than CuSA. Coastal won it all as well as Fresno so they weren’t hindered by a non P5 label. Tg brings up a solid point about the field conditions that I have heard will be addressed this offseason but I don’t see PTP as an issue either. It’s a great venue IMO and has proven it’s worth in past regionals. I’ve been to Dallas Baptist, Russ Chandler and a few others and our environment, minus a few needed updates is perfect for our program.

Money needs to go into coaching salaries and marketing. We have a good resume and we need to go after the talent in places like Texas especially where SMU and UNT don’t have programs. That’s how Dallas Baptist has been successful over the last 10 years and we need to go after the talent in Dallas/TX.... Heck a kid from the high school here in Dallas just went #2 in yesterday’s draft to the Royals and he still is playing ball right now in the state championship. The high school my neighborhood is zoned for is also in the finals and I doubt USM has even looked at any of these kids.

Money needs to go into expanding our reach and grabbing more guys like Wallner and Gabe outside of a tank of gas drive from PTP.


"Pressure washers are great for removing deep-seated dirt, grease, peeling paint and even graffiti from concrete, asphalt, siding, decks, lawn furniture, garbage cans, boats and trailers, and outdoor power equipment." - Jon Dilbert, ECU AD

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