It's hard for a college athlete who does not play basketball, baseball, or football to break into our sporting consciousness. But if you ask an LSU fan about softball, you'll like get this response: Britni Sneed. Not many players serve as the foundation of a program, but that's what Sneed did. She turned softball into a powerhouse, almost by herself. That new softball stadium could be called the House That Britni Built.
She established herself as an All-SEC player as a freshman. Snead posted a 1.13 ERA and 0.92 ERA in conference play on her way to posting a 23-5 record with 4 saves. But she had to wait until 2000 and her sophomore year to make her first All-American team. She posted a 27-7 record with another 4 saves. Snead also threw 278 strikeouts. LSU arrived and made it further in the tournament than ever before as Snead earned All-Regional honors.
If you saw Sneed pitch in 2001, you did not see her allow a run, unless you went on the road. She was literally perfect at home, not allowing one single run at home the entire year. This keyed a 0.23 SEC ERA and 0.66 overall ERA, and she pitched five no hitters and one perfect game. She threw 41.2 scoreless innings and then decided to top that and threw another 51 consecutive scoreless innings. She went 36-6 and she led LSU to its first ever WCWS appearance.
Her senior year, Sneed threw another six no-hitters and 22 shutouts, 15th in NCAA history. She went 34-7 and completed her assault on the NCAA and SEC record books. Her 1,370 strikeouts ranks fourth in NCAA history. She ranks top ten in NCAA history in wins, strikeouts per nine innings, and total strikeouts. She ranks first in SEC history in career wins (120) and shutouts (55), second in ERA (0.89), fourth in innings pitched (976.1) and saves (12), and fifth in complete game (106). She holds just about every LSU pitching record that one can have, ranking first in both career and single-season in wins, strikeouts, saves, innings pitched, shutouts, and no-hitters.
There is no meaningful LSU pitching record that Britni Sneed does not possess. She stands head and shoulders over the program's history, which has included its share of All-American pitchers. Of course, none of them were three-time All-Americans like Snead. If softball was a greater part of our sports consciousness, Sneed would be the greatest Tiger in history.
*No picture. which pretty much sums up how disrespected softball is as a sport.