After making his mark on the diamond for the North Pike Jaguars, senior infielder Peyton Badon will now have the opportunity to do the same at a four-year school.
Badon recently signed on with Delta State University as a preferred walk-on after originally committing to Southwest Mississippi Community College.
“I’m excited,” he said. “They have been talking to me during the whole process. I went to a showcase up there (Cleveland) and did pretty well. They offered me about a month after that.”
Badon’s brother, Justin, also played baseball for the Statesmen and when given the chance to do the same, he jumped on it.
“I already knew the town from going to visit him there,” Badon said. “And the coach (Rodney Batts) was the assistant coach while he was there and he is a really great guy and everyone loves him. I think that I will be a good fit.”
And Badon feels that by signing with the Statesmen he is continuing on a tradition by following in his brothers’ footsteps.
“It’s great, I really look forward to it,” he said. “Hopefully some people remember him and connect me to him in some ways.”
In addition to visiting Justin, when in Cleveland, Badon fell in love with the campus as well, saying that it was appealing to him.
“It is a great campus, it is not too big but it is not a small campus, either. It is pretty and everything is close together. Their baseball field is nice and they have a great indoor facility as well,” he said.
Last season Badon played middle infield and pitched for the Jaguars.
During the shortened, eight-game season, Badon led the team with six RBIs and was tied for the team lead in singles with five. When he gets to Cleveland, Badon said the plan is to only play infield and not pitch.
It will also affect his workout regimen as well.
“Once I graduate from North Pike, I’ll be able to focus on getting my body bigger and way stronger,” he said. “I won’t have to worry about pitching and stretching and things like that.”
He said he is thankful for his time at North Pike and learning under head coach George Lott and assistant Dustin Lott.
“They played a big roll, especially with ‘D-Lott’ with the infield, he has helped me a lot with fielding ground balls,” Badon said. “Coach George has been a great role model in my life and a good hitting coach as well.”
As far as academics, Badon said that he is unsure of what he wants to do for a living but he’s considering a biology-pre med major.
By making his college decision now, Badon believes it has relieved some pressure and gives him more time to not only focus his academics but also his upcoming final season with the Jaguars.
“I feel like instead of pressing myself, trying to worry about who is watching me, I can play my game in my senior year and be calm and collective and know that I am playing at the next level,” he said.