JuCo All-Star Catcher Visits MSU

The Mississippi State Bulldogs are always on the recruiting trail looking for the next great prospect to join the Diamond Dawgs baseball program. Coach John Cohen and his staff recently entertained one of the top junior college prospects in the country when Central Arizona catcher Max Rossiter took an official visit to Starkville.

Max Rossiter profile

The road to junior college baseball was an eventful one for Rossiter who signed a national letter of intent, but eventually backed out of that commitment.

"I signed in the early signing period in high school with New Mexico State," said Max. "After my summer season I started having some second thoughts."

Rossiter felt like he had the ability to play in one of America's premiere baseball conferences, so he made the difficult decision to enroll in junior college rather then attending New Mexico State.

"I wanted to go something bigger like a Pac-10 or SEC school, so I decided to go to junior college first," explained Max.

"It was one of the hardest decisions I have ever made. It was the best thing for me. It was tough telling the coaching staff. It was a late decision and they were pretty upset about it all."

Rossiter faced the music and informed the staff that he would not be a part of their program after all.

"They wanted me to sleep on it for a couple of days and then call them back," said Max. "I did call them back, but my mind was made up.

"I ended up talking to the head coach and I told him I just felt like I was making a mistake."

The decision to attend junior college and re-enter the prospect pool appears to have worked out for the talented catcher.

"I just took an official visit to Mississippi State," said Rossiter. "I leave tomorrow for a visit to Virginia. I am going to Washington State October 7th through the 9th. I am going to Oregon State after that."

With options now from the ACC, SEC and Pac-10, Max was anxious to get onto some campuses and see how he fit in with the schools offering scholarships.

"Mississippi State was my first visit," said Rossiter. "It was really good. It was a short visit though. I saw the Mississippi State/Auburn football game while I was there."

Max reports that the chance to see the Bulldog fans in action really painted Mississippi State in a positive light.

"It helped a lot seeing all of those fans," said Rossiter. "Mississippi State is pretty much a baseball college, but they love football too. The fans there were unbelievable. They were into the game and it was just a good experience.

"They said they average about 8,000 fans per game during baseball season and they have already sold about 5,500 season tickets. I can only imagine how it would be at a baseball game down there."

In addition to the great fan support, Max found even more things to like about Mississippi State.

"Everything was first class," said Rossiter. "The coaches and facilities were all great. They have a good program there. I was happy with everything."

Max reports that he is in no hurry to make his college decision, but he knows what he wants from a four year program.

"I am looking for a program that is ready to win," said Rossiter. "I don't want to be part of a program on the decline or in a rebuilding mode. I am a gamer, so I don't want to be part of a losing program.

"I want to go somewhere I can be developed to get to the next level and go on to pro ball. I want to see a place where I can develop as person and a player."

Max will have two years to play on the NCAA level and he is going to take a very deliberate pace to his selection process.

"Right now I am just being really open minded," explained Rossiter. "I am just trying to take it all in. I want to take my three to four visits and then make a decision.

"I was really impressed with Mississippi State and I am looking forward to going to Virginia. I hear it's beautiful there."

Rossiter hit .338 last season, turned in a perfect 1.000 fielding percentage and gunned down 25 would be base stealers.

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