MSU outfielder Jake Mangum has won the 2019 C Spire Ferriss Trophy given to the Mississippi Collegiate Baseball Player of The Year.
Mangum becomes the first player in the trophy’s history to win the award twice, first winning the award back in 2016.
“Just play hard and good things will happen,” Mangum said.
And, that has been the theme of the Mississippi State outfielder’s career.
The Jackson Prep standout is now the only player to win the Ferriss Trophy twice. It’s an honor he credits to his team.
“If you would’ve told me four years ago that this would’ve been my career, I would’ve laughed,” said Mangum Monday afternoon at the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame. “It’s been insane, it’s been a dream come true. My four years, I’ve leaned on my teammates.”
Mangum, a Pearl native, has a .375 hitting average and leads the team in hits (95), runs (65), steals (21), and has started all 56 games this year for the 45-11 Bulldogs.
Mangum also broke the SEC hits record early this season finishing with 370 hits in 251 games, which also ties him for sixth on the NCAA’s all-time hits list and is on track to become the first MSU baseball player to have multiple 100-hit seasons.
Bulldogs head coach Chris Lemonis is wrapping up his first year with state. He said it was Mangum that helped him get acclamated in the beginning.
“I lean on him for a lot of things, usually I’m asking him what uniform we want to wear, what we want to do,” said Lemonis. “He adds such a good pulse to the team, just a great leader, him and Ethan. Day to day, they bring a lot of energy to us, but they’ve been here for so long and they’ve been through so much, they just have a lot to bring to the program.”
Mangum had the opportunity to go pro at the end of last season.
In hindsight, he’s glad he came back.
“The moment I figured out I was coming back my senior year, I was excited,” said Mangum. “Last year I thought everything was the last time. Now it’s actually the last time, it’s been different. You don’t take anything for granted, but I’m so happy I came back.”
Now, Mangum and the Bulldogs have their eyes set on the big prize in Omaha.
“Thanks to Ron Polk, if we don’t make it Omaha, it’s a disappointment every year. Our goal is to head to Hoover tonight and represent Mississippi State well there and then get rolling for post season.”
Mangum and the fourth-seeded Bulldogs are preparing for this week’s SEC Tournament in Hoover, Alabama.
Mangum beat out teammate Ethan Small, Ole Miss’ Tyler Keenan and Grae Kessinger and Southern Miss’ Matt Wallner.
Mississippi State also won all of the C Spire Awards this year.