OMAHA, Neb. — Josh Cribbs’ road-weary “Flash Mob” mustered all the energy it could to cheer for Kent State at the College World Series on Saturday.
The Cleveland Browns receiver and Kent State alumnus arranged for a bus to carry fans from Cleveland to Omaha for the Golden Flashes’ first CWS appearance.
Cribbs was on hand to see off the bus at 8:30 a.m. on Friday, and 16 hours later it rolled into a motel in Fremont, Neb.
Cribbs couldn’t ride with the fans because he had to attend a Browns practice. He flew into Omaha shortly before first pitch and sat with his new friends.
The bus trip was open to the first 46 fans that signed up and paid $150. They sat in Section 202 at TD Ameritrade Park in their navy “Flash Mob” T-shirts.
Mandy Grodin, 33, of Cleveland said the trip was long but fun. The fans passed time listening to music and enjoying food and beverages provided by Cribbs. There also were giveaways of pictures and shirts autographed by the NFL star.
“We’re running on adrenaline right now,” Grodin said.
COACH LIKES NEW DIGS: Long-time Florida State coach Mike Martin wasn’t sure how he’d like TD Ameritrade Park, which is in its second year as home of the College World Series.
“I guess the only way I can describe it is I started driving a ‘49 Ford, and now I’m driving a Denali,” he said. “This place is phenomenal.”
Martin coached 14 FSU teams to the CWS at Rosenblatt Stadium, the CWS site from 1950-2010. The Seminoles played in the last CWS at Rosenblatt, and Martin hadn’t been to town since.
“I’ve had the pleasure of walking around, checking it all out,” he said. “Mama wanted to know where she was going to be sitting. It’s extremely well done. Gosh, to be able to get a hot dog and walk around to center field and never lose sight of the ball game going on, that’s quite a feat.”
SHORT HOPS: Kent State wore a purple sticker with the initials CM on it in memory of backup catcher Jason Bagoly’s mother Cheryl McHenry, who unexpectedly died Thursday night. ... UCLA enters Sunday’s game against Arizona on a 10-game win streak, the longest in the nation. ... Stony Brook, which plays an elimination game Sunday against Florida State, hasn’t lost two games in a row since March 10-11 against Kansas and Minnesota. Since then, Stony Brook has outscored opponents 63-19 in the game following a loss. ... Friday’s 12-inning game between Arizona and Florida State – the Wildcats won 4-3 – was the first extra-inning game on the first day of the CWS since 2006. The last seven extra-inning games at the CWS have gone at least 11 innings. ... The Seminoles are 1-7 all-time in extra-inning games at the CWS. ... Arizona’s Kurt Heyer had gone 88 innings without giving up a home run before Sherman Johnson went deep in the third.