The Grace of Beards

The College World Series began this weekend in Omaha, Nebraska, and, for baseball fans, there […]

The College World Series began this weekend in Omaha, Nebraska, and, for baseball fans, there is hardly anything more fun to watch. College baseball players make many more mistakes than their pro counterparts, so every at-bat—every game—is unpredictable. And, with double-elimination brackets, every game truly counts.

esq-061413-msubaseballThis year, Mississippi State’s baseball team made the College World Series for the first time since 2007. (Full disclosure: I have a rooting interest.) Its current head coach, John Cohen, was hired in 2008. Cohen is known as a very intense, no-nonsense coach, and, prior to this year, he did not allow the team—or any team he’s ever coached—to wear facial hair.

That all changed at the beginning of this season, when Trevor Fitts, one of Mississippi State’s pitchers, made a PowerPoint presentation to Coach Cohen entitled “Why Having a Beard Will Help the Mississippi State Baseball Team to Go to Omaha:”

Knowing his coach is a frequent user and proponent of PowerPoint presentations, Fitts took the initiative on behalf of his teammates to make a PowerPoint presentation for his head coach.

The story of the presentation came out last week during a discussion about how much fun this team has (and how goofy they are). The loose style of play is what the players and coaches credit with their reaching the College World Series.

The righteous command was clear: Get to the College World Series. But Cohen could not get his team there through the law. Only grace would free them and allow them to fulfill the righteous command.

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One response to “The Grace of Beards”

  1. Clay says:

    Michael – You could have also named this article “The Grace of Looking Like Billy Ray Cyrus ca. 1993”. Good stuff….

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