Mississippi State has embraced new symbol
Mississippi State has long been associated with cowbells.
No matter the sport, Bulldog fans ring their bells in support. Yet as MSU gets ready to start play in the College World Series Saturday night, it's not the cowbell that has become the rallying symbol for these Bulldogs. Instead, it's a piece of produce.
Ushered in by third baseman Jordan Westburg's dugout antics during the Tallahassee Regional, the rally banana has become synonymous with this year's MSU postseason run.
“I was pitching when it started,” Mississippi State's Cole Gordon recalled. “Apparently Jordan was hungry, so he got a banana, then he got another one and started playing with it and messing around. He used it as a radar gun. He put sunscreen on it and bug spray at one point. I think last game, it was at the spa, so it had a towel and was able to relax the whole game. We've just kind of used it for a lot of things. kept it funny and kept it loose.”
Others have taken notice. Westburg's banana shenanigans have been captured by television broadcasts. The Mississippi State marketing department distributed toy rally bananas to fans during the super regional at Vanderbilt.
Starkville retailer Maroon & Co. put rally banana T-shirts up for sale online earlier this week. They quickly sold out before becoming available yet again.
“The fans have really taken it to a new level,” Gordon said. “It's funny to watch. It's cool for Jordan. He started something that you really don't think is going to be that big and it has taken off.”
Perhaps surprisingly, one of the rally banana's biggest fans is Mississippi State interim head coach Gary Henderson. One might could label Henderson as old school with his three decades of coaching experience. Yet even an older dog has learned to embrace the power of MSU's new favorite fruit.
“I'm glad that the kids are having a good
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