The celebration lasted into the wee hours on West End after Vanderbilt’s baseball team won the College World Series in Omaha. It’s the school’s first national title in any men’s sport.
The Commodores have had higher ranked teams, but this one kept finding ways to win like it did Wednesday night. After a homerun put Vanderbilt up 3-2 over the University of Virginia, the few thousand fans gathered on campus held their breath, watching the final strikes on the football stadium’s big screen.
As Virginia’s final batter struck out, the foghorn blew to signal the historic win. Strangers shared high-fives. Students took selfies to mark the occasion. Vanderbilt alum Alan Jackson (not the singer) nearly wept. He says he started going to games 40 years ago as a kid.
“It’s been a long time coming,” he said, choking back tears. “It’s good to see. It really is.”
Jackson credits head coach Tim Corbin and calls it the “golden age” of Vanderbilt athletics. The school’s football team has also enjoyed unprecedented success, though nothing close to a national championship.
A victory celebration has been planned for 6 p.m. Thursday at Vanderbilt’s soccer stadium.