The Houston Press has posted an article on the Rice Baseball team and team leader Joe Savery. They are in the process of preparing for the Houston Astro College Classic which starts on Friday at noon when the Owls take on Vanderbilt. They will also face Baylor and Texas A&M on the weekend. The full article about the Owls is available here.
Are we seeing the beginning of a magical season? I don’t think we can say that yet but the Texas State Bobcats tonight knocked off the Number 1 team in the country Rice by a score of 3-2. The Bobcats scored a run in the bottom of the ninth inning with two outs to secure the victory. The action started with two outs when Jarrod Bunn singled to right field. Paul Goldschmidt followed that with a single to right center which sent the runner to third with two outs. Laurn Randall singled through the left side of the infield to win the game. Both teams used a multitude of pitchers and all pitched well except for Bobby Bell who suffered his first career loss in 13 appearances. Eric Weaver picked up the win for the Bobcats. Rice will be back in action Friday at the Minute Maid Park College Classic against Vanderbilt. Texas State will play Prairie View A&M this weekend for two games.
Conference USA has posted their preview on the Rice Owls for the 2007 season. Every publication is expecting the Owls to take the title this year but I believe that Tulane will keep the race competitive. Rice superstar two-way player Joe Savery is expected to lead the team on the mound and also at the plate where he has a .356 career average. The full preview is available here.
Conference USA has released the results from the Pre-Season Coaches Poll. The Rice Owls are the unanimous choice to win the conference receiving all nine first place votes. They are followed by Tulane and Houston to fill out the Top 3. Rice had both Joe Savery and Cole St. Clair named Pre-Season player and pitcher of the year. The full release with the rest of the Top 5 in the conference and the rest of the Conference team is available here.
SeBaseball has posted a preview of Conference USA this season. They expect Rice and Tulane to battle with Houston to finish in the top 3 of the conference. They expect Rice to edge out Tulane. The rest of the conference is improving but still not at the same level of the perennial powers of Rice and Tulane. The full article is available here.
Rivals has released their top 25 for the upcoming season. The top team is Rice with UNC, University of South Carolina, Virginia, and Miami rounding out the top 5. I believe that Miami is a little overrated being in the top 5 but we will have to see how the season falls to find out the truth. It is nice to see 3 ACC teams in the Top 5.
The full poll is available here.
The 2007 Signing period has started for College Baseball. The Boston College Eagles have signed 13 players including nine student-athletes from Massachusetts or Connecticut. This is a sign that Aoki will be focusing on dominating the recruiting trail with New England kids attending BC. We have a bunch of press releases on the rest of the country.
UNC heads to Alabama for a SEC-ACC matchup. UNC is a better team then Alabama with solid hitting and 2 first round picks in there pitching staff with Andrew Miller and Daniel Bard. UNC should sweep them in the series
South Carolina visits Georgia for the Super Regional. Georgia has a ton of good arms and a good pitchign staff as they should take this series.
Stanford at Oregon State should be a win for the beavers
Missouri at Cal St Fullerton is a very easy pick if you look at it on paper but Cal State will be taken to 3 games but win the series though.
Oklahoma at Rice will have the Owls come out on top.
Miami at Ole Miss is a win for the Hurricanes.
The number one seed Tulane Green Wave hosts the Rice Owls in a Super Regional showdown in New Orleans.
Tulane is led by a solid cast of characters with both good pitchers and hitters. Brian Bogusevic is a lefty pitcher who was the number 24 pick in this years draft. He has a record of 13-1 with a 2.72 ERA. He has struck out 119 people. He is the most dominant pitcher on this Tulane staff and this should help Tulane at least get the first game of the Series. Micah Owings will likely pitch the second game with his 10-4 record and a 3.64 ERA. The Tulane offense is led by six hitters who hit higher then .300 this season: Nathan Southard (.359 AVG), Tommy Manzella (.354 AVG. with 20 SBs), Scott Madden (.347), Brad Emaus (.346), and Greg Dini (.301). This offense is deep and will create a problem for the Owls.
Here is Baseball America’s take on Bogusevic
Though more teams prefer him as a three-pitch lefthander, he also has five-tool potential as a right fielder. On the mound, Bogusevic shows an 89-93 mph fastball along with a solid slider and changeup. He has good command, though his velocity and location slipped when he strained a hamstring early in the season. Bogusevic’s size, swing and bat speed give him tremendous power potential from the left side of the plate. That power is still more raw and not as evident in gamesÂbut it’s there. He’s also Tulane’s fastest player, running the 60-yard-dash in 6.6 seconds during the team’s scout day last fall. His arm obviously is an asset on defense as well.
Wayne Graham will led his Rice Owls into this matchup as heavy underdogs. The Rice team is loaded with three super pitchers in Joe Savery (5-2 2.42 ERA), Eddie Degerman (7-1 3.09), and Josh Greer (5-4 4.11). The offense for the Owls is led by Adam Rodgers with his .414 AVG. Joe Savery also has the second highest batting average on the team with a .390 AVG.
My prediction for this series is a romp by Tulane in two straight games to head back to the CWS.