February 18th is finally here and in a couple of months we will be dealing with the great weather of Omaha for the College World Series as the season comes to an end. We all know about some of the biggest stories of this year will be the new BBCOR bat standards and the pitch clock that come into effect this season. All the coaches that I spoke with during the off-season stated that the pitch clock will have little effect on their pitching staffs so they consider it a non-factor. The biggest story if the new bats which have deadened some of the “pop” in the bats which probably will lead to lower scoring games.
Here are some of my stories to follow this weekend:
- How will the UConn Huskies deal with the high expectations this season after hosting an NCAA Regional and being a national ranked program to start the year?
- The Maryland Terps hit the recruiting trail hard, finding a lot of success, but open the year at perennial power Texas. They brought in a very strong recruiting class headlined by transfers Tomo Delp and Chuck Ghysels while getting Tim Kiene to College Park. I would not be surprised one bit if they took two games from Texas this weekend.
- Can Anthony Rendon continue his outstanding college career after having two major ankle injuries in the last two summers. Last season, saw him hit .394 with 26 homers and 85 RBI as he won the 2010 Dick Howser Award. Will he repeat this year?
- Gerrit Cole and Trevor Bauer are by far the best 1-2 punch in the country but will the Bruins have enough offense to carry them to another appearance in Omaha?
- Will the Cal Bears have an outstanding season as they look to make another appearance in the NCAA Tournament or will they struggle with the pressure of transferring on the horizon?
- Mike Martin Sr. still doesn’t have a CWS title as he enters his 32nd season in charge of the Seminoles baseball program. Will they finally give the legendary coach his first National Championship?
- Will the Big East get four teams in the NCAA Tournament this year?
What are you looking forward to this season?