He was called “Warren Morris Gold”.
Morris and his LSU teammates donned shiny gold sunflower tops for their National Championship game on June 8, 1996 against Miami on CBS.
Morris had a two-run homerun with two strikeouts in the bottom of the ninth to give LSU a 9-8 victory for their third national championship in the eternal golden moment of the University World Series and LSU history. And the Tigers went to 8-0 in gold.
LSU had never worn gold tops before this playoff series.
“We wanted to do something different by entering the NCAA Regional Championship,” then assistant coach Dan Canevari said.
LSU had won the SEC regular season title in 96 with a score of 20-10 and was 44-13 overall in the regular season, but lost twice in a row in the SEC tournament and was eliminated.
“The team needed a boost,” said Canevari, who had set new heights in the locker room during batting practice ahead of the NCAA Regional Championship opener against Austin Peay.
“When we got there, new gold jerseys,” Morris said. “The room erupted like Christmas morning. There was new excitement at Alex Box that night.”
LSU coach Skip Bertman seized the moment. “You are a special team. We wanted you to wear a special jersey,” he said.
“They’ve gone crazy,” Canevari said.
LSU won its first three NCAA Regional games, then destroyed Georgia Tech in the championship game, 29-13, with a seventh inning of 18 points.
The Yellow Jackets always see LSU’s yellow gold. The Tigers set the NCAA record for doubles in an inning with eight and tied the NCAA scores for an inning with 13 hits and with 17 straight batters hitting safely. LSU set NCAA playoff innings records for points (18), home plate appearances (22), total bases (27) and runs batted in (17).
“We never wanted to take those jerseys off,” Canevari said.
Sunflower Gold and LSU won four more at the College World Series, topped by Morris’ circuit shortly after returning from wrist surgery.
“Who knew the uniform change would provide such a boost,” Morris said.
LSU rose to purple for the 1997 playoffs and won another national title, but the Sunflower Gold became LSU’s Sunday jersey – a tradition that continues under coach Paul Mainieri.