(COLUMBIA, Tenn. – June 7, 2012) - - - Sometimes it takes the right combination of talent and college to produce a pro player. For Marsalis Holloway, it was the combination of raw talent and Columbia State Community College that made him a 34th round pick for the Kansas City Royals.

Holloway, a Dominion Christian high school graduate originally signed with Darton College out of High School and he readily admits it was a mistake.

“I chose the wrong school,” Holloway said.

Noting that he didn’t really take classes seriously and his grades faltered, he found himself ineligible to play for Darton by the spring semester of his freshman year. “I was taking summer classes trying to make up some of the work,” he said. And, admittedly, the skinny, 5’10” player did not have the physical frame that is normally associated with major league players.

But Coach Mike Corn learned from major league scout, Sean Gibbs, that Holloway was, “a diamond in the rough” and saw a lot of potential in Holloway.

“Sean Gibbs asked me to take a look at Marsalis,” said Mike Corn, Head Baseball Coach of Columbia State. “I brought Marsalis to Columbia State because he was an athletic runner who really fits our style of play.” Corn continued.

“We make sure that our players take care of business with grades and classes at Columbia State. He spent the spring semester on the Columbia State main campus in Columbia, Tennessee, and juggled 14 semester hours, finishing the semester with a solid grade point average.”

“I think that Marsalis benefited from that discipline as well,” Corn said.

Holloway ended the spring 2012 campaign hitting in the .330 range with 16 stolen bases.

“We couldn’t be more excited for Marsalis having his hard work pay off,” Corn said.

Columbia State’s 2012 season included a record 38 game home winning streak and a single season record of 43 wins and became the 2012 TCCAA conference champions.

Columbia State is a two-year college, serving a nine-county area in southern Middle Tennessee with locations in Columbia, Franklin, Lawrenceburg, Lewisburg and Clifton. As Tennessee’s first community college, Columbia State is committed to increasing access and enhancing diversity at all five campuses. Columbia State is a member of the Tennessee Board of Regents, the sixth largest higher education system in the nation. For more information, please visit

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