STARKVILLE, Miss. (WCBI Sports) — The home of Mississippi State baseball, Dudy Noble Field, is known for its fantastic atmosphere.
After all, Dudy Noble set an NCAA Super Regional attendance record with 14,385 fans.
There’s one fan who stands out amongst the rest. Some know him as 68-year-old MSU Alumni Ron Caulfield. However, most know him as the Mississippi State Candyman.
“I can tell if no one knows me because they’re like, uhh, but then somebody else sitting around will go — he’s the Candyman! Take it. It’s okay. It’s okay,” Caulfield said.
Caulfield has been a recognizable face at Mississippi State athletic events for the last 22 years. He’s most known for being the smiling face handing out candy throughout Polk-Dement Stadium during baseball games.
“People would ask my name, and I would say, well, I pass out candy. Alright, you’re the Candyman,” Caulfield said.
Yet, the origin of the Candyman’s story doesn’t begin with fellow Bulldogs. Instead, it all started with some friendly Texas A&M fans Caulfield met in the late 90s.
“They brought three bags of candy and said, you need to pass it out at the ballgame for baseball. I was like, uhh, I’m not really sure about that. They said, well, you are,” Caulfield said.
From there, the rest was history, and the Candyman was born.
“I passed out the candy. People went nuts. The adults were worse than the kids. Anybody from two years old to 96 were fighting for a penny piece of candy,” Caulfield said.
At every Mississippi State baseball game, you can find Ron on the third-base side holding this fifteen-pound bag of candy and distributing as much as he can to fans sitting around.
“People want to holler and support the team, but they don’t want to be the first one to holler. So you got me. I’m loud. I’m going to make you holler. If you get candy, you’re going to holler,” Caulfield said.
The tradition for Ron isn’t a cheap thrill. Caulfield estimates that he spends nearly 2000 dollars a year keeping a constant stash piling up in his closet.
For the Candyman, it’s a small price to pay for what he gets in return.
“Some young man or young lady will come up. Maybe a sophomore in school here. They’ll go–I remember when I was six years old, and I thought, well, that leaves an impression on them,” Caulfield said.
As to how long the Candyman plans to be a staple at Bulldog baseball games: “as long as God’s willing,” Caulfield said.