C.C. Watson Commits

One of the nation's top lefthanded pitchers, C.C. Watson, makes the Mississippi State coaching staff a happy bunch of guys today thanks to his commitment to Mississippi State.

"I just committed to Mississippi State," said Watson. "I told (head) Coach (John) Cohen first. (Pitching) Coach (Butch) Thompson was with him so I told both of them."

Considering he's such a high priority for Mississippi State, the two coaches felt more than just excitment.

"They told me it was a relief for them and that they could finally calm down," said Watson with a slight laugh. "They told me that they had been wanting me. And they said they were real happy."

It was also somewhat of a relief to him, partly due to the uncertainly that came with a change in coaching staffs at Mississippi State.

"I have been going to Mississippi State ever since I was 12 and that has always been the place for me, but when (former MSU head) Coach (Ron) Polk and his coaches left I was a little worried because I hadn't heard from them," said Watson. "But Coach Thompson and Coach Cohen came there and I talked to them. And I really liked them a lot."

And it didn't hurt that he and MSU pitching coach Butch Thompson have something in common.

"Coach Thompson is a lefthander," said Watson. "And with him being the pitching coach and me being lefthanded that's great."

Watson chose MSU over numerous other high-profile schools.

"I had offers from Alabama, Auburn, College of Charleston, Mississippi State, and LSU was going to offer me tomorrow when I went down to Lakeland," said Watson, who is headed to Lakeland to participate in the East Coast Showcase. "Georgia said they were going to watch me pitch in Lakeland, then after that they were going to make me an offer."

If you are wondering why there is such strong interest in the lefty, what he did in a tournament held Sunday afternoon at the University of Alabama will answer your question.

"I pitched Sunday at Alabama and I was hitting 95 (miles per hour)," said the youngster, who, in addition to Mississippi State, also unofficially visited Auburn and Alabama. "I think I was around 91 to 95."

C.C. Watson is Mississippi State's fifth commitment in the class of 2009. Others include Tupelo High School righthander Chris Stratton, South Panola High School first baseman Ethan Bright, Briarwood Christian infielder/pitcher Ben Bracewell and Benjamin Russell High School righthanded pitcher Kendall Graveman.

3836158 Check out the videos I did of C.C. in Marietta, Georgia at the WWBA 17U National Championship tournament and at a tournament held at Mississippi State.

Marietta, GA -

Starkville, MS -

Gene Swindoll is the publisher of the GenesPage.com website, the source for Mississippi State sports on Scout.com sports network. You can contact him by emailing swindoll@genespage.com.

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