One of the most notable Spartans from the sports world will be going back to campus this spring.
Kirk Gibson will speak at Michigan State’s commencement ceremony on May 5, the university announced. Gibson, a former Michigan State football and Major League Baseball star, also will receive an honorary doctorate of humanities.
Gibson had a lengthy career in the major leagues, most famously hitting a pinch-hit, walk-off home run off Oakland’s Dennis Eckersley to give the Los Angeles Dodgers a win in Game 1 of the 1988 World Series.
Gibson was named National League MVP in 1988. In 1,635 career games, he had a .268 batting average and hit 255 home runs. He went on to manage the Arizona Diamondbacks from 2010-2014 and had a 353-375 record.
Before he starred on the baseball diamond, however, Gibson was a standout wide receiver for the Spartans. As a Michigan State wideout, he made 122 career catches for 2,347 yards and 24 touchdowns. He was an All-American in 1978 and recently was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.