Wednesday, June 10, 2009

College World Series Preview

Its that time of year again. Time to determine who the NCAA National Champion of Baseball is for this year. I will tell you, the College World Series never disappoints. Last year we saw a Fresno State team, who had to win their conference tournament just to get a bid to regionals, go all the way and win the whole thing. They were ranked 162nd in the nation at the time of the conference tourney. The 2 years prior to that, Oregon State and UNC battled it out with the same outcome of Oregon State winning it back to back. Defending champ Fresno State did not make it this year, so who will be the cinderella story?

The University of Virginia made the College World Series this year for the first time in school history. They took the hard road to get there defeating the #1 pick overall in this year's draft, Steven Strasburg in the regionals. Then beating Ole Miss in the super regionals, on Ole Miss' home field. This is a team that can really cause some problems for some teams in this year's series.

North Carolina is making their 8th appearance in school history (fourth in a row), but still has never won the whole thing. This year could be different with Dustin Ackley, the 2nd overall pick in this year's draft leading the way for UNC with insane numbers. .422 BA, 22HR's, and 70 RBI 's in only 63 games. UNC has a tough bracket to come out of with Texas, Arizona State, and Southern Miss. Texas being the top ranked team in the nation, and Arizona State #5 overall.

LSU is back in the tournament this year making their 15th appearance in school history. They already have 5 titles under their belt, and who can forget that LSU team that beat Miami on a walk-off home run back in '94 against a stacked Miami Hurricanes team. LSU is coming in as the 3rd ranked team in the Nation. They have one of the best closers in the nation in Matt Ott, so if it is a close game going into the 9th, other teams better watch out.

Southern Miss knocked off Florida in the super regionals to make their first trip to the College World Series in school history. Could this team be the next Fresno State? Southern Miss has won 12 of its last 15 games, getting hot at the right time.

Texas comes into the Series as the Nation's top ranked team. They have more College World Series titles than any other school in the tournament with 6. This is the first appearance for the Longhorns since 2005. Texas has the lowest batting average of any team in the tournament, but they will bunt and "small ball" you to death. Texas had a fairly easy road to the Series, but they did go 25 innings in a game, that saw one of their relievers go 12 1/3rd innings of no hit ball.

Cal State Fullerton is another team that has been here once or twice before. They have one of the better baseball programs in the nation, and won it all back in 2004. They come into the tournament ranked #2 in the nation, and are going to have to knock off LSU if they want to get into the championship game.

The #5 team in the nation, Arizona State Sun Devils, are making their 21st appearance in school history. The Sun Devils have stormed through the regionals and super regionals, going 5-0. Arizona State and UNC are the only teams to have gone undefeated.

The last team that has made it into the College World Series is the University of Arkansas. The Razorbacks beat a tough team in Florida State to advance in the super regionals. Arkansas will take on Cal State Fullerton in the first round. Arkansas has never beaten Cal State Fullerton.

Who will take it this year? Will there be another cinderella story, or will a powerhouse win it all. There is a good mix of teams in it this year, and no matter who wins, I am sure that the College World Series will be fun to watch.

Prediction: UNC beats LSU in finals

1 comment:

  1. I don't get into the College World Series that much, but last year's run by Fresno State was fun to watch.

    Sec202 - Keep us updated if any of the Phils draft picks are going to be playing. I'd love to watch them.

    I caught UNC on Saturday afternoon against East Carolina and they looked nasty. So much power in their lineup. Ackler only had one hit but it was a monster 3-run homer.