Rivals.com editor Kendall Rogers has announced his top five overall programs. He puts Oregon State in the top spot after Pat Casey has led the Beavers to two consecutive national championships. The Beavers are also one of the top recruiters in the nation so they should continue their dominance. He puts the Cal-State Fullerton Titans in the runner up spot with the success they have had with Augie Garrido, George Horton, and entering his first season Dave Serrano. The program should not see a difference at all since Serrano was able to build a CWS team at UC-Irvine. Texas takes the third place as Augie Garrido has made the Longhorns a national contender every season and continue to bring in great players. Rice head coach Wayne Graham is entering his 17th season in Houston as he has made the Owls a great pitching university. Kendall rates them in the fourth spot with North Carolina coming in at fifth. Mike Fox has brought the Tar Heels program back to the national stage with consecutive appearances in the CWS Championship series where they have lost both times to Oregon State. The Tar Heels had a great pitching team in 2006 but a great hitting team in 2007 so he is able to win with different types of teams. The full article from Kendall is available here.
The University of Nevada-Las Vegas has announced their 2008 baseball schedule. The Rebels will open the season on February 22nd when Central Michigan begins a three game set in Vegas. The Rebels will also play two home games against Washington State and a three game series against Maine before heading on the road to play Arizona. They will also host WCC power San Francisco and head to Cal-State Fullerton before heading into conference play. The full schedule is available here.
Coach Paul Mainieri and Recruiting Coordinator Terry Rooney took home the title of #1 Recruiting Class of 2008. The Collegiate Baseball title was unsurprising as Coach M (in his first year at Baton Rouge after a successful stint in South Bend) and Coach Rooney had assembled a massive class including 12 Freshman and 7 JuCos, including several All-Americans.
The future is certainly looking bright for LSU, which is seeking to restore its position as one of the top programs in the country.
This was the 25th ranking of recruiting classes by Collegiate Baseball. The full release can be found here.
The list of top classes goes as follows:
Rank Team Recruits
1. Louisiana St. 19
2. Florida St. 20
3. Oregon St. 16
4. Notre Dame 14
5. UCLA 11
6. Cal. St. Fullerton 16
7. North Carolina 12
8. Arizona St. 17
9. San Diego 18
10. Texas 17
11. Washington 16
12. Auburn 14
13. Virginia 16
14. Oklahoma St. 18
15. Vanderbilt 13
16. Georgia 14
17. Rice 12
18. South Carolina 13
19. Missouri 16
20. Miami, Fla. 8
21. Clemson 10
22. Stanford 13
23. Georgia Tech. 11
24. Arizona 9
25. Mississippi 17
The TCU Horned Frogs have released their 2008 schedule recently. The Horned Frogs will open up the season on February 22nd when they host Cal-State Fullerton for the first game of a three game set. This game marks the beginning of the Dave Serrano era at Fullerton. The next weekend they will head up to Minneapolis to take part in the MetroDome tournament with Minnesota, Pepperdine, and Tulane. If you are in the Minnesota area, you need to make it to that tournament to see top of the line College Baseball as each school is expected to finish near the top of their conference. TCU then heads home for two non-conference weekday games before hosting Ole Miss for a three game set. TCU finishes their non-conference weekend schedule with a visit to Wichita State from March 14th-16th. TCU then heads into conference match-ups on the weekends and get the key match-up against Utah in Lupton Stadium on May 2nd-4th. TCU will also host the Mountain West Conference tournament on May 20th-25th. The full schedule is available in PDF format here. The College Baseball Blog expects TCU to make a run for the conference title in 2008.
Mark Etheridge of SEBaseball.com checks in with an article about many different topics. The first topic which is discussed is the whole Oregon/UC-Irvine/Fullerton musical chair act that has been going on all summer including Rod Delmonico (former head coach at Tennessee) throwing his name in the hat at UC-Irvine. The next topic discussed is how Dave Perno of UGA has had to change up his staff for the 2008 season with an assistant coach moving on to a different school. He finishes up the article by talking about some of winners and losers in the summer in getting transfers. The full article is available here.
The Daily Pilot wrote an article this weekend on Dave Serrano leaving UC-Irvine for Fullerton. The article discusses some of the reasons Serrano left Irvine for Fullerton which is led by the fact that the Irvine athletic department is currently operating without an athletic director. Serrano also states that Cal-State Fullerton athletic director Brian Quinn spoke with him in 2004 when Serrano left for Irvine and told him that he would be the next coach at Fullerton if Horton ever left. Quinn also reiterated this at Rosenblatt Stadium when the Anteaters were making their magical run. The article also discusses that former Tennessee coach Rod Delmonico has already been in contact with Serrano about taking over the Irvine job. The full article is available here.
As Brian reported earlier Dave Serrano has agreed to terms with Fullerton. Dave has signed a 4 year contract to be the new coach at Fullerton. Dave will bring over Sergio Brown from Irvine as an assistant.
For more on the story follow the link.
With Dave going to Fullerton where will Irvine start looking. Dave did not leave the cupboard empty with a team expected to compete for a conference and national championship in 2008.
Serrano said it remained up in the air who his assistants would be, but that his first obligation is to his two assistants at UC Irvine, Sergio Brown and Greg Bergeron. He said he was informed that Irvine is going to conduct a national coaching search, but he hopes Brown or Bergeron is a candidate for the job. If both assistants decide they want to follow Serrano to Fullerton, and Vanderhook decides he wants to remain as well, Serrano will have to choose between the three coaches for two spots.
Serrano also confirmed that uncertainty surrounding UC Irvine’s commitment to athletics played a significant role in his decision to leave. UC Irvine’s previous athletics director, Bob Chichester, cited budget cuts and a lack of commitment to athletics by Chancellor Michael V. Drake as reasons for resigning in August. UCI is in the midst of a search for Chichester’s replacement, but no hire is expected for at least another month, according to Serrano.
Baseball America is reporting that Dave Serrano will accept the head coaching position with Cal-State Fullerton after saying last week that he was going to stay at UC-Irvine. The article from Baseball America is available here. The College Baseball Blog will have more information as it becomes available.
Aaron Fitt of Baseball America recently had a chance to sit down with George Horton to discuss his move to Oregon. A major change in the Oregon situation is that Horton will have the full 11.7 scholarships in his first season and the school is looking to build about a 10-15 million dollar baseball stadium. Horton also believes that Rick Vanderhook should be named the next head coach at Fullerton. The full article is available here.
George Horton the new head coach of Oregon has completed his coaching staff with the hiring of Andrew Checketts from UC-Riverside and Jason Gill from Cal-State Fullerton. Checketts led the Riverside pitching staff to a nation best ERA of 3.68. Checketts will be making $120,000/year with a one time stipend of $25,000. Gill comes over from Fullerton where he helped Horton to the NCAA Title in 2004. The full release from Oregon is available here.