The Cowboys opted to bus home from Louisville, where their season ended Sunday in a regional finals loss to the host Cardinals.
“One last journey together,” Oklahoma State coach Josh Holliday said Monday via phone, during a break for lunch on the road home.
And what a journey it's been — so far.
While still in the initial stages of a program reconstruction, OSU baseball's first year of the Holliday era revealed real traction.
* A second-place finish in the Big 12 regular season standings.
* 41 wins; the most by a Cowboys club since 2008.
* A return to the NCAA Tournament.
Holliday's 12-month journey — he was hired on July 8, 2012 — caught up to him during the postgame press conference in Louisville on Sunday night, where his reflection on his first team led to an emotional scene that required a few long pauses to gather himself.
“What I'll take from them is their sharing that desire to make this work again the way we want it to,” Holliday said. “They did their part. They got fans back involved. They played hard. They played exciting baseball. They came from behind. They defended their home turf.
“They did a lot of the little things I think it takes to draw your fan base back. And they made a lot of people proud. I can't tell you the number of people I heard from the past month, just expressing their enjoyment of watching the team play and their excitement in the kids and their excitement in not only our team, but our future.
“From my standpoint, what a compliment to these guys for putting themselves out there in a way that's going to help us grow. I thank them for that, for helping us bring back a lot of things that maybe were missing. It's really special what they did.”