It was 50 degrees in Columbia, Mo., on Thursday, and a balmy 72 in Miami. Back up north, the temperature in Ann Arbor, Mich., hit 25, while out west, it was 44 degrees in Corvallis, Ore.
And here in Austin, it was 70 and sunny.
Each of these cities has a Division I college baseball team. None was playing a game Thursday. No team in the country was.
This is the first year of a uniform start date in NCAA Division I college baseball, meaning teams cannot begin playing games until Feb. 22. The rule, which also prevented teams from practicing until Feb. 1, was implemented to help cold-weather schools, which have complained of a competitive disadvantage. Just two northern schools (Ohio State in 1966 and Oregon State in 2006 and 2007) have won the College World Series since 1966.
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CSTV has started up their season preview with Doug Kroll checking in with two-time National Champion Oregon State. They have become a power in the Northwest as they have been to the CWS three times over the last 3 seasons with the back to back national titles in the last two seasons. OSU’s recent success has made the Oregon Ducks bring back their baseball program in 2009. The full article from CSTV is available here.
Kendall Rogers has continue with his reviews of this year top teams. He has done a very good job in talking to the coaches and doing his research on this year teams.
Coming in at # 6
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Finally number #11
CSTV editor Doug Kroll checks in with an article previewing the top freshmen in the country. He ranks Matt Harvey of North Carolina as the best freshmen entering the season. Harvey was rated as a first round pick before the 2007 MLB Draft but his stock slipped when his ties with Scott Boras came up. He ended up getting drafted in the third round by the Angels but decided to head to Chapel Hill to play with Mike Fox. Continue reading
Baseball America has released their preseason top 25 list. The full ranking is available here.
Leading the way are the UCLA Bruins in the top spot. Arizona, Vanderbilt, Ole Miss and North Carolina landed in spots 2 through 5, while Missouri, Oregon State, Michigan, ASU and Miami rounded out the top 10.
Just before the Christmas holidays, Susan Casey told her husband, “We haven’t had a vacation for two years.”
“Yes, we have,” Pat Casey responded. “We’ve spent it in Omaha.”
The visits to Nebraska were business trips – and very successful ones at that, as Casey-coached Oregon State teams won back-to-back College World Series championships.
After Christmas, Pat, Susan and their four children spent eight days in Hawaii. Besides sun and surf, Pat hooked up with former OSU player Jacoby Ellsbury, played golf with Nike President Charlie Denson, took care of a little Nike business and enjoyed a real vacation for a change.
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When I got up this morning and noticed that we had a clear blue sky and the temps were hovering around 45 degrees I knew that I need to drive down to Disch Falk Field to get my Baseball fix in for the week. As I was walking around the Stadium taking pictures of the renovations going on I got to thinking what this season will bring to the world of College Baseball Fans.
Could Oregon State make it back to the CWS and when their third in a row. Or will this be the year that North Carolina breaks through. After winning the 2003 Championship, can Wayne Graham and the Rice Owls get pas that hurdle and get to the Championship Series. Could we also see teams that have not been in a couple years make it back like Texas, Miami, or LSU. What about the Cinderellas teams from last year, UC Irvine and Louisville do they have enough to recreate that magic to get back to OMAHA. Tell us your thoughts on the up and coming season.Make sure you check back as we will provide coverage from the first pitch on Friday February 22nd to the last pitch at the CWS!Photos courtesy of Donald J Boyles
To see the rest of the renovations click here.
Kendall Rogers, baseball editor for Rivals.com, kicks off his top storylines of 2008. Prime among those are OSU’s efforts to produce the coveted Three-Peat.
Also featured are the Pac-10 race between ASU, UCLA and OSU; the Longhorns efforts to make it back to Omaha; Vanderbilt’s high octane offense and Miami’s charge in the ACC.
The full article may be read here.
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.