Coach Ron polk
Coach Ron polk
From special reports

STARKVILLE – The Board of Directors of the Mississippi Sports Foundation have announced that former Mississippi State University baseball coach, Ron Polk will be awarded with the "Rube Award" given each year at the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame Induction banquet presented by Sanderson Farms and the Sanderson Farms Championship.  The award is named after Michael Rubenstein, who served as the Hall of Fame's first Executive Director and is to honor lifetime achievement dedicated to improving Mississippi sports.

"As impressive as Ron's record is on-field, how his hard work, dedication and vision changed the game of college baseball is even more amazing," according to current Executive Director Bill Blackwell.  "The effect that Ron brought changed the way the game is played and presented, not only in Mississippi, but nationwide."

College baseball was a "non-revenue" sport until men like Ron Fraser at Miami and Polk brought in the idea that better facilities and improved entertainment could attract crowds to the college game.  Better facilities also attracted better players and MSU became one to the premier programs in the country.

Hall of Fame board president, Johnny Ray said, "All you need to do is look at the stadiums and crowds now common in the SEC to see Ron's influence.  He has been driven to improve the game whether it is on-field, in the stands or at the NCAA level."

This is the sixth presentation of the "Rube", previous winners were Dave "Boo" Ferriss, Ben Puckett, Archie Manning, George Bryan and Governor William Winter.  

This year's Induction presented by Sanderson Farms and the Sanderson Farms Championship will be held on Saturday August 5 at the Jackson Convention Complex. Tickets are on sale online at or at the museum office.