Ole Miss was feeling a little froggy tonight. The Rebels are the top-ranked baseball team in America. So before Game 1 of the weekend’s huge SEC series against No. 5 Tennessee in Oxford, Ole Miss trotted out its football coach for the ceremonial first pitch. Lane Kiffin was his jovial old self, trolling Tennessee by tossing aside the baseball and throwing a yellow golf ball instead. That’s a reference to when the two schools met in Knoxville in football season and UT fans were ridiculed for throwing trash onto the field following a questionable call late in the game. During the melee, someone chucked a yellow golf ball at Kiffin.
Credit to Kiffin. It was an original moment, and kinda funny.
But Tennessee got the last laugh. The Vols hit five home runs and crushed the Rebels in the first game of the series, winning 12-1.
It’s early, and the SEC is loaded, but Tennessee looks really, really good … like national championship-caliber good. The Vols are 21-1 and now have 64 home runs on the season. And they’ve been without their top two pitchers to this point. Rick Barnes is exceptionally good, and Josh Huepel looks like he might be. But Tony Vitello just might be the best coach on the Knoxville campus.