Meridian Community College Baseball has a familiar face in a new place. Former Eagles standout Jarrod Parks has returned to the program as an Assistant Coach/Recruiting Coordinator.
Parks began his new position earlier this month and is looking forward to helping continue the winning tradition of MCC baseball.
“I’m exceptionally thankful to be back home at Meridian. MCC made me into the player I was and the coach I am today. I am honored that Coach Dillon Sudduth, a former coach of mine, asked me to be a part of the MCC program once again, and I can’t wait to get started,” Parks, said.
Parks comes to Meridian after previously serving on the coaching staffs at East Mississippi Community College and Mississippi Delta Community College. He also spent one season as the Head Baseball Coach at Starkville Academy. During his time at MDCC, Parks served as the hitting coach, infield coach, and recruiting coordinator.
Parks began his collegiate playing career at MCC in 2007. He was a member of the 2008 MACJC State Championship team. As a sophomore, he batted .375 with 14 homers. During his time as an Eagle, Parks earned All-State and All-Region Honors. After his time at MCC, Parks signed with Mississippi State to continue his collegiate career. While at MSU, Parks was among the SEC leaders in batting average. During his senior season, he was a finalist for the Ferriss Trophy, which is given to the top collegiate player in Mississippi. After the conclusion of his time at MSU, Parks was drafted by the Los Angeles Angels in the 24th round of the 2011 MLB Draft.
The addition of Parks to the MCC coaching staff will not only help the Eagles on the field but also on the recruiting trail. Parks is known as one of the top recruiters in college baseball.
“What an exciting day for our program as we bring back one of the all-time great Eagles, Jarrod Parks, to join our staff. We hit a home run with this hire as Jarrod has proven himself as one of the top recruiters and hitting coaches in this part of the country throughout all levels of amateur baseball. Most importantly he has impeccable character and has shown an innate ability to connect with his players. To have the opportunity to bring back a former player home where he poured blood, sweat, and tears on Scaggs Field as a player to win championships is truly special. I cannot wait for our players to return to campus to work with him,” said Dillon Sudduth, MCC Head Coach.
The Eagles will report back to campus in August to begin preparation for the 2020 season.
Multiple industry insiders have the following reactions to the hiring of Parks.
“Jarrod Parks is an outstanding young coach with a bright future. He is creative, intelligent and hard working. Coach Parks will be a great fit for Coach Sudduth’s staff.” Said John Cohen, Mississippi State University Athletic Director.
“Jarrod is a great addition to the coaching staff. His energy and passion for the game is as good as anyone. I look for him to make a huge impact both in recruiting and on the field,” said Justin Henry, Detroit Tigers Regional Cross Checker.
“Having known Jarrod for a long time, as both a teammate and a friend, I can confidently say that he will be a tremendously valued addition to the staff. His experience in this league will serve him well in continuing to develop young men, both on and off the field. I am confident he will be instrumental in advancing the long-standing tradition of the MCC program. He understands the game, is highly regarded and well connected throughout the state of Mississippi,” said Jet Butler, New York Mets Area Scout.
"I had the privilege of recruiting and coaching Coach Parks. He's a winner plain and simple. He had a relentless work ethic as a player and that trait has continued as a coach. JP fought and persevered through numerous injuries and made himself into a draft pick simply through toughness and hard work. As an MCC alum, it thrills me to see two former Eagles leading the charge. Coach Sudduth and Coach Parks will be a force to be reckoned with. Tip of the cap to Dillon for making a strong hire. Great days are ahead for the Eagles," said Lane Burroughs, Louisiana Tech Head Baseball Coach.
“I’m excited to hear about Jarrod Parks returning to MCC on Coach Sudduth’s staff. Having the opportunity to recruit and coach Jarrod at Mississippi State it was clear that he was a rising star. He was an amazing student, great leader, and teammate, loved coming to park every day, a top hitter in the best league in America, and showed toughness through injuries. Jarrod checks all the boxes and brings real coaching experience back to the Eagles! Congratulations my friend and keep ‘making a difference,” said Butch Thompson, Auburn Head Baseball Coach.