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Publication Date: April 25, 2006
Four weeks to go -- you know the drill:
First off, there are eighteen conferences (a higher number than usual) where only the conference tournament winner will advance. Here they are, with my best wild guess at who will win:
There's still time a couple of these to change -- I can spin a scenario where the WAC gets three bids, for example, and Michigan or Wichita State could easily play into an at large bid -- but that's where we are right now. None of these will host.
One Possible At-Large Bid
There are three conferences with teams that will qualify for at-large bids if they need to, so bubble teams should hope for them to win their conference tournament:
Out of these, there really aren't many candidates for a second at-large bid, although it's still possible for Birmingham-Southern or UNC-Wilmington. Notre Dame will host.
Rem -- Average ISR of remaining opponents I -- In tournament O -- Out of tournament BI -- On the bubble, currently in BO -- On the bubble, currently out
RPI ISR All Conf Rem Status Clemson 1 9 30-13 12-6 106.4 I Georgia Tech 3 6 32-10 13-8 105.7 I North Carolina 6 11 36-8 15-6 105.6 I North Carolina State 10 19 31-13 13-8 109.9 I Florida State 11 16 33-10 13-8 106.8 I Wake Forest 18 40 30-14 14-7 109.4 I Virginia 19 24 35-10 13-8 108.7 I Miami, Florida 20 44 27-15 12-9 116.8 I Maryland 49 93 20-25 7-17 97.7 BO
The RPI is being kind to them, but all eight of these deserve to be in. Maryland's an odd case; they're probably too far below .500 in conference, but the RPI is almost there, and the rest of the schedule is easy. Clemson, Georgia Tech, UNC, and FSU will host, and NCSU or Miami could.
RPI ISR All Conf Rem Status Nebraska 5 2 32-6 12-3 113.0 I Texas 8 5 29-15 13-4 106.7 I Oklahoma 9 4 33-10 11-4 117.6 I Baylor 29 31 26-17 9-9 112.4 I Kansas 39 34 29-16 9-9 108.1 I Oklahoma State 43 39 28-13 7-8 114.1 BI Texas Tech 58 52 24-17 6-10 115.3 BO Missouri 73 88 19-20 7-11 111.7 BO
Interesting conference race, but that discussion is a couple of weeks away. Nebraska, Texas, and Oklahoma will host, and they're on the verge of pulling off three national seeds.
RPI ISR All Conf Rem Status Cal State Fullerton 7 1 31-10 8-1 114.9 I UC Irvine 40 15 25-17 5-7 110.0 BI Long Beach State 44 25 20-18 4-1 115.9 BI Cal State Northridge 59 48 18-20 2-6 112.6 BO Cal Poly 70 33 23-18 7-5 111.7 BI UC Riverside 76 30 21-15 3-3 118.0 BO
There's too much conference play left to get a good feel for this, so expect some turnover in this list. Fullerton will host.
RPI ISR All Conf Rem Status Rice 2 3 35-9 14-1 105.9 I Houston 12 17 29-15 12-3 103.6 I East Carolina 34 59 27-15 6-6 105.2 BI Southern Mississippi 35 46 29-15 5-7 101.8 BI Tulane 41 55 28-15 5-7 105.5 BI
They're dancing a delicate dance here on the bottom of this list. I don't expect more than four bids and wouldn't be surprised by three, but right at this moment they're all lined up just inside the fence. Rice and Houston will host, causing apocalyptic traffic meltdowns in the Houston metro area.
RPI ISR All Conf Rem Status Arizona State 14 10 28-14 7-5 112.8 I UCLA 17 13 23-17 7-5 114.4 I Oregon State 37 7 28-10 9-3 113.0 I Washington 45 14 25-15 6-6 110.8 BI Southern California 46 28 23-20 9-6 113.9 BI Stanford 47 36 17-18 3-9 114.0 BO Arizona 63 53 19-20 5-7 115.2 BO California 102 64 19-21 6-9 117.8 BO Washington State 115 65 26-15 5-7 115.6 BO
This is what tough scheduling will do to you, at least as long as the silly got-to-be-over-.500-to-get-in rule is in place. The entire conference could theoretically get in (although Wazzoo would be a stretch at this point), although not at the same time, but at least four of them are flirting with not being over .500. It's hard to imagine the tournament without Stanford, but that's what we're looking at. ASU and OSU host.
RPI ISR All Conf Rem Status Alabama 4 8 32-12 13-5 108.0 I Arkansas 13 12 30-12 10-8 110.6 I South Carolina 16 26 30-11 11-7 109.4 I Georgia 22 29 25-16 7-11 110.2 I Mississippi State 24 20 29-13 8-9 111.1 I Mississippi 25 41 27-15 10-8 111.2 I Florida 27 73 24-20 6-12 114.1 BI Kentucky 31 38 32-10 11-7 111.2 I Louisiana State 33 66 27-16 6-12 114.7 BO Auburn 36 75 21-23 8-10 118.6 BO Vanderbilt 42 60 26-16 10-8 110.3 BI Tennessee 82 86 24-16 7-10 110.2 BO
Another one where we can't really eliminate anyone yet, although a couple of them will probably be gone after this weekend. LSU and Florida need to start winning some games, or the RPI won't be able to overcome the lousy conference records, and both of them have really tough remaining schedules. Florida's only in at the moment because I had a really hard time filling the 64th spot, which will actually go to a Cinderella team anyway; there are a bunch of teams in the 40-50 RPI range with problems with win-loss records. Auburn needs to clear .500 by a bit. Tennessee surprised me, but if they can get to .500 in-conference, they'll make it to Hoover and probably make it in. Bama, Arkansas, and South Carolina will host; Georgia, MSU, or Ole Miss could.
RPI ISR All Conf Rem Status College of Charleston 21 32 33-10 15-3 104.2 I Elon 23 37 33-12 14-4 101.3 I Georgia Southern 68 106 24-19 10-5 106.1 BO
CofC is trying for the Coastal Carolina Memorial Southern Mid-Major #1 Seed, but isn't quite there at the moment, and Troy is making a better claim.
RPI ISR All Conf Rem Status Troy 15 27 32-11 11-1 99.3 I South Alabama 38 63 30-15 10-5 97.2 BI Florida International 54 83 26-18 7-8 88.2 BO Louisiana-Lafayette 55 61 27-13 10-2 97.3 BO
After a rough start to the year, the Sun Belt has performed well in mid-week games recently, and several teams have jumped up into the mix. I don't think it will happen, but Troy could host, either at home or, more likely, at the beautiful minor league park in Montgomery.
RPI ISR All Conf Rem Status Pepperdine 28 18 27-16 7-5 105.3 I San Diego 57 22 25-18 7-5 112.7 BI San Francisco 67 42 26-18 7-5 112.0 BO Gonzaga 93 62 25-16 7-5 109.3 BO St. Mary's 117 76 21-16 8-4 113.0 O
I don't really have anything to say here; I just wanted to dwell a moment on St. Mary's being in first place on April 27.
This means absolutely nothing, ignore it.
The list in one handy place:
America East SWAC Baylor Southern California Atlantic 10 WAC Kansas Alabama Atlantic Sun Notre Dame Oklahoma State Arkansas Big Ten Winthrop Cal State Fullerton South Carolina Horizon Old Dominion UC Irvine Georgia Ivy Clemson Long Beach State Mississippi State MAAC Georgia Tech Cal Poly Florida MAC North Carolina Rice Mississippi MEAC North Carolina State Houston Kentucky Mid-Continent Florida State East Carolina Vanderbilt Mountain West Wake Forest Southern Mississippi College of Charleston MVC Virginia Tulane Elon NEC Miami, Florida Arizona State Troy OVC Nebraska UCLA South Alabama Patriot Texas Oregon State Pepperdine Southland Oklahoma Washington San Diego
Pitch Count Watch
Rather than keep returning to the subject of pitch counts and pitcher usage in general too often for my main theme, I'm just going to run a standard feature down here where I point out potential problems; feel free to stop reading above this if the subject doesn't interest you. This will just be a quick listing of questionable starts that have caught my eye -- the general threshold for listing is 120 actual pitches or 130 estimated, although short rest will also get a pitcher listed if I catch it. Don't blame me; I'm just the messenger.
|4/09||Old Dominion||Jason Godin||Hofstra||9.0||7||2||2||6||12||33||41||158|
|4/14||Winthrop||Heath Rollins||North Carolina-Asheville||8.2||10||4||4||2||14||36||39||123|
|4/20||Maryland-Eastern Shore||Dustin Longchamps||Mount St. Mary's||7.0||5||4||3||2||11||26||29||135|
|4/20||St. Francis||Brian Honeyman||Iona||9.0||13||7||3||1||4||41||45||143(*)|
|4/21||UCLA||Hector Ambriz||Arizona State||7.0||7||3||2||2||5||29||31||129|
|4/21||Cal Poly||Bud Norris||UC Riverside||7.0||10||9||4||3||2||28||38||126|
|4/21||Florida International||Walker Whitley||Louisiana-Lafayette||9.0||9||6||2||3||6||36||42||127|
|4/21||McNeese State||Drek Blacksher||Nicholls State||9.0||7||2||1||2||4||32||37||134|
|4/21||North Carolina State||Andrew Brackman||North Carolina||7.0||9||5||5||3||7||29||33||121|
|4/21||Georgia Southern||Teaford||North Carolina-Greensboro||8.0||3||0||0||4||10||26||30||123|
|4/21||Oklahoma||Daniel McCutchen||Texas Tech||8.0||8||2||2||4||5||32||36||123|
|4/21||UC Irvine||Justin Cassel||UC Santa Barbara||8.2||7||2||1||1||15||33||34||137|
|4/21||Utah||Josh Cooper||New Mexico||6.2||8||5||0||6||5||26||33||131|
|4/21||The Citadel||Wes Wrenn||Western Carolina||7.0||9||3||3||3||7||28||32||121|
|4/21||Northeastern||Adam Ottavino||William and Mary||8.0||2||0||0||3||16||25||29||126|
|4/22||Belmont||Charles Lee||Florida Atlantic||9.0||7||6||4||2||4||32||37||121|
|4/22||Jackson State||Ch Stapleton||Alabama A&M||9.0||10||6||6||3||11||35||40||148(*)|
|4/22||South Alabama||P. J. Walters||Middle Tennessee State||10.0||6||0||0||4||11||34||38||145(*)|
|4/22||Northwestern||Dan Brauer||Penn State||7.0||6||2||2||3||8||27||30||122|
|4/22||Pittsburgh||Billy Muldowney||South Florida||7.1||4||0||0||4||11||25||30||122|
|4/22||Grambling State||Demetrius Marshall||Southern||8.0||8||7||7||4||11||32||36||139(*)|
|4/22||Cleveland State||Nathan Schaefer||Wisconsin-Milwaukee||7.0||6||4||4||4||8||27||31||130|
|4/22||Belmont||Josh Moffitt||Florida Atlantic||9.0||6||2||2||1||11||32||34||121|
|4/22||West Virginia||Dan Leatherman||Louisville||9.0||11||9||8||3||3||37||40||132(*)|
|4/22||Pittsburgh||Rob Brant||South Florida||7.1||2||0||0||6||10||22||29||125|
|4/22||Alabama-Birmingham||Jim Crew||Central Florida||6.2||3||3||2||8||4||23||32||131|
|4/22||UCLA||Dave Huff||Arizona State||9.0||2||1||1||2||6||27||30||121|
|4/22||Connecticut||Rich Sirois||St. John's||9.0||9||2||2||1||3||32||36||121|
|4/22||San Jose State||Branden Dewing||Fresno State||8.0||9||3||3||1||4||34||35||124|
|4/22||Lipscomb||Matt Schnelly||Charleston Southern||8.0||9||5||5||5||7||31||37||136(*)|
|4/22||New York Tech||Joe Esposito||Maine||7.0||5||2||1||6||9||26||34||134(*)|
|4/22||Indiana State||Ryan Hayes||Northern Iowa||9.0||9||7||7||3||4||36||39||154|
|4/22||Virginia Military||Travis Smink||Birmingham-Southern||7.0||4||1||1||3||6||25||29||121|
|4/22||Birmingham-Southern||Brandon Hynick||Virginia Military||7.0||4||2||2||5||3||21||28||123|
|4/23||Alabama-Birmingham||Lyle Northington||Central Florida||8.0||5||1||1||3||3||30||34||149|
|4/23||Southeast Missouri State||Asif Shah||Austin Peay State||8.0||8||4||3||4||10||31||35||134(*)|
|4/23||Louisville||Brian Halford||West Virginia||8.2||12||6||6||3||4||34||39||131(*)|
|4/23||Norfolk State||Joseph Seal||Delaware State||8.0||10||6||6||7||6||31||39||145(*)|
|4/23||Sam Houston State||Zach Adkisson||Texas State||8.0||6||3||3||3||3||27||34||125|
|4/23||Northeastern||Kris Dabrowiecki||William and Mary||8.0||2||1||1||2||6||27||29||126|
|4/24||Bucknell||Nathan Mittag||Holy Cross||8.0||8||6||2||1||7||34||39||132(*)|
|4/24||Liberty||Dustin Umberger||Coastal Carolina||9.0||8||2||2||3||3||31||36||130|
|4/25||Boston College||Ted Ratliff||Harvard||9.0||3||2||2||3||9||30||34||126|
|4/25||Brigham Young||Matthew Jensen||Northern Colorado||7.1||6||3||2||3||5||25||31||124|
|4/25||College of Charleston||Danny Meszaros||The Citadel||7.1||5||2||1||2||11||25||30||121|
|4/26||Arkansas-Pine Bluff||A Terry||Oklahoma State||7.0||12||11||9||9||3||30||41||150(*)|
|4/26||Arkansas-Pine Bluff||T Davis||Oklahoma State||8.0||26||16||16||2||2||47||50||156(*)|
The first two are actual counts replacing estimates.
(*) Pitch count is estimated. As always, I welcome actual pitch count corrections.If you're interested in reprinting this or any other Boyd's World material for your publication or Web site, please read the reprint policy and contact me
|Boyd's World-> Breadcrumbs Back to Omaha-> Going In||About the author, Boyd Nation|