The Cougars are set to host 29 home games at Darryl & Lori Schroeder Park with Opening Weekend set for Feb 17-19 in a three-team home event featuring Houston, Nicholls State, and Wake Forest.
“Once again the schedule is one that I feel puts us in the best position to earn an NCAA at-large bid. Our non-conference slate is filled with quality opponents, which gives us the opportunity to elevate our RPI. This schedule will be a challenge to our team and we are looking forward to the competition ahead of us,” Whitting said.
During the six seasons under Whitting, Houston has accumulated an overall home record of 121-62 (0.661) and a 17-1 (.944) record during Opening Weekends with sweeps the last three years vs. Villanova (2016), Minnesota (2015) and Nicholls State (2014).
“Our University looks forward to hosting ACC opponent Wake Forest and Nicholls State, who represents the Southland Conference, Opening Weekend at Darryl & Lori Schroeder Park. It is exciting to once again open the college baseball season in front of our fans with what will be a great weekend of college baseball,” Whitting said.
NOTES ON SCHEDULE
1 – 2017 will mark the first time competing in the Whataburger Classic in Corpus Christi, Texas
2 – Cougars to play two games at Constellation Field in Sugar Land, TX (Rice, Sam Houston State)
3 – Houston has won the Silver Glove Series vs. Rice three straight seasons
8 – 2017 schedule features eight home midweek games
12 – The Cougars will open at home for the 12th consecutive season on Feb. 17-19
14 – Houston will play 14 of its first 20 games at Darryl & Lori Schroeder Park
17 – Under Todd Whitting, the Cougars are 17-1 during Opening Weekend the last six seasons
29 – Houston is set to play 29 home games at Darryl & Lori Schroeder Park
121 – The Cougars have won 121 home games under Whitting since 2011
Houston will play 14 of its first 20 games at Darryl & Lori Schroeder Park, highlighted by a non-conference home series vs. four-time National Champion Cal State Fullerton, who last appeared in Omaha in 2015, on March 3-5 and a very strong regional opponent in Alabama State (March 17-19).
Adding to the non-conference slate, the Cougars will make two road trips to face Baylor (March 10-12) and UC Irvine (March 24-26), while facing off at Louisiana-Lafayette (March 21) – a team that finished ranked among the nation’s Top 25 a year ago.
2017 will also mark the first year Houston competes in the established Whataburger Classic at Whataburger Field in Corpus Christi, Texas – home of the Hooks’, the Astros’ AA affiliate. The tournament will feature games against Missouri (Feb. 24), FIU (Feb. 25) and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (Feb. 26).
“We are thrilled to play in the Whataburger Classic in Corpus Christi as it is typically one of the most competitive tournaments in the country. Whataburger Field is a tremendous venue with an opportunity for our fans to travel to a great city and see us play,” Whitting said.
The Silver Glove Series continues with three games against in-town rival, Rice with the first contest at home on April 4, followed by an away game at Reckling Park on April 11 and a series finale in Sugar Land, Texas at Constellation Field on May 9. The series officially dates back to 1998, but the two teams have competed against one another since 1948 with Houston winning the last three series.
Another three-game series has been established, as Houston will face Sam Houston State in Sugar Land, Texas (April 18), at home (April 25) and on the road in Huntsville, Texas (May 2) this season. The three-game series will be named in recognition of supporter of both Universities, Don Sanders.
Houston will open American Athletic Conference play on the road at UCF on March 31 – April 2 before welcoming East Carolina to town on April 7-9 for its first home league series.
The Cougars are scheduled to travel to UCF (March 31-April 2), Memphis (April 13-15), USF (April 28-30) and Tulane (May 12-14) and host East Carolina (April 7-9), Tulane (April 21-23), UConn (May 5-7) and Cincinnati (May 18-20) during conference play.
“I expect the American Athletic Conference to again be one of the premier leagues in college baseball. The success our league has had over the past few years in earning numerous bids to the NCAA Tournament and the tremendous coaches in our league, assure that week in-and-week-out it will be extremely competitive,” Whitting said.
The American Athletic Conference Championship will return to Clearwater, Florida and Bright House Field for the fourth-straight year, May 23-28.