College baseball is doing all it can to make this sport as big as it can on “The Road to Omaha.” It is a sport that begs for the fanbase of college football and basketball and there is so much left to do in order for that to happen. There has been talk about adding the mercy rule but that would have an argument on both sides of the coin. What about changing the format of how the CWS is played? Many fans have complained about how long an inning alone can take. Either way, we are one long weekend away from the games in Nebraska.
The regionals saw a lot of runs scored as well as home runs hit. It began with three home runs from Yohandy Morales of Miami in a win over Canisius to become just the fourth Hurricane to have three home runs in a postseason game. We saw Oklahoma St score 43 times on the same day and in one, they fell behind 12-0 to Missouri State only to come back and win, 29-15. They would score 55 runs before being held to three runs by Arkansas in the Stillwater final to get eliminated.
There were teams that came into the postseason with expectations and some that should not have been here. Va. Tech is the baseball story of the year in college. Predicted by many to have a mediocre season, the Hokies reached heights never before seen. They finished as the #4 nationally ranked team and the top seed in the Blacksburg Regional. When it was all said and done, they found themselves celebrating their first-ever Super Regionals berth.
The Texas Longhorns have been a superpower in college baseball for quite some time. They began the year as expected, one of the favorites early on. Then the month of March hit and things would take a bad turn. They would go 12-8 in the month and all of sudden Texas baseball was looking fragile. After a 12-9 loss to Texas A&M on the 29th, they found themselves at 19-8. Not the kind of standard Longhorn baseball is used to. From there they would go 26-11 to get the #9 national seed.
Then there is the big story. The one that asks the question if #1 keeps winning. The Volunteers of Tennessee have had a season for the ages. Playing in the vaunted SEC is a massive undertaking in itself but to be able to dominate the season against some of the best teams in the country is another thing. They are currently 56-7 and went 25-5 in conference play. They lost two in a row just twice and rolled into the SEC Tournament winning without much of a threat from any opponent. Can the Vols ride the wave all the way to Omaha and to the national title? Well, an overall #1 has not done so since the 1999 Hurricanes.
The series I am looking at pits #9 Texas at #8 East Carolina. This should be the most competitive series of all. We will find out which Texas team shows up and of East Carolina is ready to take down Goliath. If Texas is to win this series, they will have to do it on the road.
Can Auburn continue its offensive onslaught and take out a more than ready Oregon St team? They will have to rely on their bats as their pitching will not be enough.
Can the miraculous season of the Hokies move them on to play in Omaha? Oklahoma will not go out easily.
Last but not least. Will Tennessee keep playing with the confidence it will take to win it all as a #1 seed?
Strap it up and get ready for some of the best baseball you will see starting Friday. It’s time for the Super Regionals of college baseball. Time to continue the Road to Omaha.