"I like the crowds and look forward to playing in front of them. And I like how their coaches aren't like a lot of other coaches in the fact that they spent more time on me," said the 6-2, 190-pounder who throws his fastball in the 87 to 88 range, topping out at 90 to 91. "They are more about each person, not about trying to get a mass of numbers. When they go after one person, they put everything into that one person. And everybody in our family are Mississippi State fans. So, I guess that helped my decision, too."
And his dad, former MSU football player Dana Moore, couldn't be happier with Forrest's decision.
"I think this is exciting for the entire family, Jewel included since she was a Diamond Girl when she was at State," said Dana. "And Forrest is really excited about it."
But, according to Dana, despite the fact that they are a Maroon and White family, Forrest's school of choice still had to be the right fit.
"I wanted him to play at State only if it was a good fit for him and it was a good fit because they are going to let him play (first base) and pitch and see where his talent leads him," said Dana, who confirmed that Forrest had verbal scholarship offers from LSU, TCU and Arkansas that would have taken care of most of his college not only due to his outstanding athletic ability, but also his outstanding academics (3.6 GPA, 24 ACT).
And there were other factors that made it the right fit - the MSU coaches and the caliber of people they are. That's always important to a dad and mom.
"The background of the two (assistant) coaches was important. Coach Mac (Russ McNickle) is involved in the FCA and Forrest has been raised in the church and goes to a private baptist school in Baton Rouge," said Dana. "That had a lot to do with how Forrest got along with Coach Mac and Coach (Tommy) Raffo also. They really developed a good relationship with him on the visits that he took up there. And it doesn't get much better than to play for (MSU head) Coach (Ron) Polk."
But even with all the things in State's favor, they still had to work hard to gain this extremely big-time commitment.
"He's received letters from 50 division-1 schools. Mississippi State worked hard to get him," said Dana.
And those letters included ones from other big-time baseball programs.
"I was getting a bunch of letters, but the ones who were sending me a lot of letters were Arkansas, Alabama, Arizona State and Miami," said Forrest, who was recently selected, as a junior, Louisiana's Mr. Baseball, an honor that covers all classifications. "Clemson also sent a bunch. Cal State Fullerton also sent a lot."
And don't think the letters were being sent by programs that read about him on the internet. Most of the coaches who were mailing him letters had seen him pitch in person.
"When I tried out for the Olympic team a bunch of schools saw me there and then started sending me letters," explained Forrest, a two-time 3A All-State selection. "Then, when I made the last cut to try out for the trials team there were a bunch of West coast teams that were out there such as Arizona State and Cal State Fullerton. After I made the trials team, that is when I started getting so many letters."
While he's now firmly committed to MSU, he still has a busy summer schedule, mostly things you would expect from a player of his caliber.
"I am going to the Perfect Game (tournament) in Arkansas this week. I am going to try out again for the Olympic team next week. If I made the (East Coast Showcase southeast) team today, I am going to go to Wilmington," said Forrest, who was one of 64 of the top players from the Southeast trying out for the East Coast Showcase games at Dudy Noble Field Wednesday. "I am also going to the all-star game at Cape Cod. And, hopefully, the AFLAC games."
We'll keep you up-to-date on the latest exploits of this very talented youngster throughout the summer and during next year's baseball season.
Gene Swindoll is the publisher of Dawgs' Bite, Powered by GenesPage.com, the source for Mississippi State sports on the Scout.com sports network. You can contact him by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.