Delta State University, also known as DSU, is a regional public university located in Cleveland, Mississippi, in the heart of the Mississippi Delta. DSU is one of eight publicly funded universities in the state.
World War II greatly affected the college. Anticipating the war in 1941, the college created a civilian pilot training program, which evolved into the current Commercial Aviation Department. When the war began, 254 Delta State students joined the armed forces. When the war ended, student enrollment at Delta State increased from 185 to 483.
During the 1947 session of the Delta Council, Dean Acheson (Under-Secretary of State in Truman's administration) delivered a speech on campus that unveiled the Marshall Plan, detailing postwar relief for Europe.
In 1955, the name Delta State Teachers College was changed to Delta State College. Delta State earned full accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools in 1963, which eventually led to the opening of the graduate program in 1965. In 1974 the college changed its name to the current Delta State University.
Delta State University is located on at 1003 W Sunflower Rd (Highway 8 West), Cleveland, MS, 38733.
Approximately 4,000 students enroll annually in Delta State's undergraduate degree programs, with an additional 600 enrolled in post-graduate or professional-level courses. About 30 percent of students reside in on-campus housing. Delta State provides both men's dormitories and women's dormitories, as well as apartments for married students.
Most of the buildings on campus use a particular brick pattern of yellow, orange, and white bricks. Particularly famous facilities at Delta State University are the large natatorium for holding swimming competitions, the Bologna Performing Arts Center (pictured left) with two theaters (one that seats 1,178, and another that seats 135), and the very recently constructed sound recording studios of the Delta Music Institute.
However, since the late 1980s, the student body has embraced a mascot that depicts a piece of okra (a Southern vegetable) wearing boxing gloves brandishing a mean expression. It was thought to be "tougher" and "more Delta-esque" than the Statesman mascot. The popularity of "The Fighting Okra" grew so much that there were many myths started on how the mascot came to be, the most popular of these stating there was a stubborn okra plant on the first base of the baseball field that grew back every time it was cut. In the mid-1990s, a student vote was taken, resulting in the university taking on "The Fighting Okra" as an unofficial mascot. The "Fighting Okra" was featured in the "Okraphobia" episode of the Food Network show Good Eats.
One of Delta State's most notable sports coaches was (Lily) Margaret Wade (1912-1995). She coached the women's basketball team to three consecutive AIWA national championships and a 93-4 record, including a 51 game winning streak. Wade was elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1985. Today, the Division I women's basketball player of the year receives the Margaret Wade Trophy.
Lloyd Clark, a native of Drew, took over the women's basketball program in 1983. Over the next 19 years he compiled a staggering 494-98 record. In addition, Clark's teams won three NCAA Women's Division II Basketball Championships. During those years, DSU played in the NCAA tournament 16 times, with 11 appearances in the Elite Eight. Clark's 1988-89 team became the first NCAA team to win a National Championship on its home floor. During his career, Clark compiled a record of 206-38 (.845) in Gulf South Conference Games. Lloyd Clark is a member of the Mississippi sports Hall of Fame along with other DSU heroes Margaret Wade, Luisa Harris-Stewart, and Dave "Boo" Ferriss among others.
Another very important figure was former Boston Red Sox pitcher Dave "Boo" Ferriss who coached the baseball program for nearly thirty years and led them to three appearances in the NCAA Division II College World Series before retiring in 1988. Boo was born in Shaw, Mississippi.
One notable would-be baseball player and student who was cut during tryouts was writer John Grisham. In 2008, Grisham returned to the campus to join Ferris in an evening of baseball tales, raising more than $100,000 for the athletic program.
Delta State won the 2004 NCAA Division II national baseball championship.
US Patent Issued to Maharashtra Hybrid Seeeds on Nov. 29 for "Methods for Plant Regeneration, Transformation and Production of Insect Resistant Transgenic Okra" (Indian Inventors)
Dec 13, 2011; ALEXANDRIA, Va., Dec. 13 -- United States Patent no. 8,067,673, issued on Nov. 29, was assigned to Maharashtra Hybrid Seeeds Co....