Reaching a World Series is a goal for any coach or baseball player.
A former Mississippi State player gets an opportunity to reach the Little League World Series Friday night as coach Mark Muzzi's Florida team takes on Columbus, Ga., in the finals of the Southeastern Regional. The game begins at 7 p.m. In Warner Robbins, Ga., and will be televised by either ESPN or ESPN2 of the family of networks.
Muzzi played for the Bulldogs from 2005-06 under coach Ron Polk and said the lessons learned while in Starkville prepared him to coach his Little League squad.
"There have been amazing memories," Muzzi said about his time at MSU. "It gave me a platform for learning under coach Polk. The things I learned from him gave me a lot of confidence and gave me a lot of ideas to be able to accomplish something like this."
After his playing days at Madison Central High School, Muzzi spent two years at Pearl River Community College before arriving at Mississippi State.
Muzzi moved for Florida after playing for the Bulldogs and worked in the front office of the Washington Nationals. He's currently attending the University of Central Florida in Orlando, working on his masters in sports business management.
While off for the summer, Muzzi agreed to coach the Florida All-Star team and has enjoyed the ride.
"It's an amazing time and we have a lot of special kids," Muzzi said. "I don't have a kid on the team or anything, but it's a team that I was asked to coach about a year ago and it's been an absolute blast.
"I didn't get a chance to play Little League while growing up because Mississippi doesn't have many Little Leagues so this has been an awesome opportunity for me to live this dream."
Mizzi still has a connection with Mississippi and Starkville as his father Tim works at MSU as an architect.
Mark realizes he still has some fans in Mississippi that's following the progress of a Little League team from Florida.
"It's so much fun to know that we're here in Georgia and there's half of Mississippi watching me," Mark Muzzi said. "It's kind of like we're in a bubble because we don't really realize how many people are watching."