FROM CBB NEWS SOURCE
COLUMBUS, Ohio – First-year Ohio State baseball head coach Greg Beals announced the team’s 2011 schedule today. Highlights include home Big Ten series against Michigan, Iowa, Michigan State and Northwestern, a first-ever appearance at Bill Davis Stadium by Oklahoma State for a two-game series, and three games as part of the Big Ten/Big East Challenge to open the season.
Ohio State will begin the 2011 season playing its first 22 games on the road with trips to Florida, North Carolina and California. The Buckeyes open their season Feb. 18-20 at the Big Ten/Big East Challenge – opponents to be determined – before playing four against Western Michigan Feb. 25-27 in Port Charlotte, Fla. Ohio State then travels to North Carolina to play in the Western Carolina Tournament March 4-6 and Winter Haven, Fla. for the RussMatt Invitational March 11-13. Rounding out the early-season schedule are eight games in California March 18-26 against California, Fresno State and Cal State-Bakersfield.
The Bill Davis Stadium home opener is set for 6:35 p.m. Tuesday, March 29 against Xavier and will be the first of 21 home games for the Buckeyes in 2011. Ohio State’s home slate includes two-game midweek matchups with North Florida May 3-4 and Oklahoma State May 10-11.
Big Ten Conference play opens April 1-3 in Columbus against Northwestern and concludes with a three-game set at Minnesota May 19-21. The Buckeyes, in addition to their home Big Ten series, take on Indiana, Penn State and Illinois on the road.
A few notes about the Buckeyes 2011 opponents:
- California (March 18-20): Advanced to 2010 NCAA Norman Regional; finished 2010 with a 29-25 record
- Fresno State (March 22-23): 2010 WAC regular-season champion; 2008 College World Series champion
- Michigan (April 29-30, May 1): Coming off 35-win 2010 campaign; finished second in Big Ten regular season
- North Florida (May 3-4): Buckeyes have faced the Ospreys five times in last three seasons; first matchup in Columbus since 2007; first season under former LSU head coach Raymond “Smoke” Laval who replaces Hall of Famer Dusty Rhodes; in five seasons at LSU, Laval led the Tigers to a pair of College World Series berths, one SEC title and was named 2003 SEC Coach of the Year
- Oklahoma State (May 10-11): First Big 12 Conference team to visit Columbus; Buckeyes hold 3-0 advantage in all-time series, defeating Cowboys twice in 1966 College World Series including an 8-2 win in the championship game; first meeting with Cowboys since 1994; first Big 12 regular-season opponent since Kansas in March 2008
- Minnesota (May 19-21): 2010 Big Ten regular-season and tournament champion; runner-up in Fullerton Regional
Non-conference opponents that are still to be determined will be announced at a later date.