College Baseball Projected Field Of 64: April 23Projections
Another week is in the books and the postseason picture continues to get clearer.
In last week’s projections, we had UCLA and Oregon State leading the way in terms of protected top eight national seeds, and there’s no change there this week with the Bruins and Beavers still leading the charge. Vanderbilt comes in at No. 3, while Georgia sits at No. 4 and Louisville rounds out the top five. There was just one addition made to the top eight this week — Arkansas. The Hogs replaced Mississippi State, which they swept last weekend, in the top eight. Dave Van Horn’s club is in good shape right now with an RPI of five, along with a strong 9-3 mark vs. RPI Top 25 teams and a 13-7 mark vs. RPI Top 50 teams. Those are strong marks. While MSU is no longer a top eight, it is certainly within striking distance at No. 11 and could be right back in with a strong finish.
In terms of the Top 16 seeds and other regional hosts, there was just one change this week in that area, too. NC State was in our Top 16 last week, but after another tough weekend, the Wolfpack is down to 24 in the RPI with just a 3-3 mark vs. RPI Top 50 teams. North Carolina, which is 13-8 in the ACC, replaced the Pack and is up to 20 in the RPI with a 5-7 mark vs. RPI Top 50. Again, like the Pack, not overly impressive, but the Tar Heels have the edge at the moment. It’s worth noting the two teams will play a three-game series here in a few weeks.
Oklahoma State, which currently leads the Big 12 Conference, and Indiana are other potential hosts we considered, while Clemson, which has been a host for us before, is in a tailspin and dropped to 34 in the RPI after getting swept at home by Duke last weekend. Also keep an eye on Auburn, which is 10-8 in the SEC, has an RPI of 16 and has eight wins vs. RPI Top 50.
Here are how the overall bids break down by conference: SEC (11), ACC (8), Big 12 (6), Pac 12 (6), American (3), Big Ten (3) and Big West (2).
Resident bracketologist Mark Etheridge and national writers Kendall Rogers and Aaron Fitt make up the postseason field each week.
LAST FIVE IN: Florida, Duke, Texas, Illinois State, California
FIVE FIVE OUT: Florida Atlantic, Michigan, TCU, Texas State, Indiana State
—Projected automatic bids indicated by *