With the calendar now in the month of February, believe it or not, the sound of bat meeting ball will soon be in a college ballpark near you. Yes, college baseball, and with it, the Atlantic Coast Conference baseball seasons are just weeks away. Some schools will begin their year on February 19. The league season will begin on February 26. As has been the case, the league is looking very good in the pre-season polls that have already come out. Baseball America ranks seven teams in their top-25 poll with, three Virginia, Louisville, and Florida State inside the top-10. Seven teams are ranked in the D1 Baseball poll with only Louisville ranked in the top-10. Perfect Game has six in their first poll, with Louisville, Miami, and Virginia in their top-10. The Collegiate Baseball poll named five in their top-25 with Miami the only one in the top-10.
Each school will be allowed to schedule 50 total games for the upcoming spring. The conference setup will consist of 12 three games series for a total of 36 league games. There will be an additional 14 mid-week contests added on. If all goes well, the regular season will end on the weekend of May 20-22. The Atlantic Coast Conference tournament will take place May 25-30 with the site for this year event to be announced at a later date.
There will be one program that will have a coaching change for the season ahead. North Carolina will have a new voice in the dugout. His name is Scott Forbes and he has been with the program for the past 19 seasons. Forbes becomes the 25th head coach in the program history. He is just the fifth head coach of the baseball team since 1931. Forbes replaces Mike Fox, who after 22 years, decided it was time to hand the program over to someone else. Fox, who was coaching at his alma mater, where he was a student, player and then coach, called his time at the school “hard for even me to comprehend.” During his 22-years at the helm of the Tar Heel program, Fox compiled a record of 948-406-1. His teams won three league titles and advanced to the College World Series seven times. The 2006 and 2007 teams made it to the championship round. He leaves as the winningest coach in Carolina history. Fox’s leave college baseball after a 37-year career with an overall record of, 1,487-547-5 for a winning percentage of .731.
The ACC not only has good teams but it also has some very good players to go watch if you get the chance. Louisville catcher, Henry Davis, was named to four preseason All-American teams. Miami catcher. Adrian Del Castillo. was named to three of those All-America teams. Boston College, which has been getting some early season buzz from some of these publications, is led by the duo of infielder Cody Morissette and outfielder Sal Frelick. They were both named to multiple All-American teams. Wake Forest is being led by first basemen Bobby Seymour, who was named to all four All-American teams. While another first baseman, Nick Kavadas of Notre Dame, got some early season All-American notice.
The league, from top to bottom, should make for a very competitive league. Every weekend should be full of some great college baseball. It will not be long before the words “Play Ball” will be uttered.