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NCAA Division-I Baseball Regionals Projection – May 19

May 18, 2015
College of Charleston, winners of the Colonial Athletic Conference regular season, grab one of the regional host spots in this week's projection. (Photo courtesy of CofC Athletics)

College of Charleston, winners of the Colonial Athletic Conference regular season, grab one of the regional host spots in this week’s projection. (Photo courtesy of CofC Athletics)

Less than a week away from the announcement of the national seeds and the entire field for the NCAA Division-I Baseball Tournament, things are, finally, beginning to take shape, and not a moment too soon. Granted, the 25 conference tournaments getting underway this week could yield surprises and one of the two conferences that do not have post-season tourneys, the Big West, is, still, up for grabs.

Seven of last week’s eight projected national seeds remain in tact, with the exception of Florida State. The Seminoles were swept at home by Clemson to drop out in favor of Miami-Florida. As for host sites, only one team slipped from the projection as Florida Atlantic yields its spot to College of Charleston. The Owls could regain their hosting spot with a Conference USA Tournament championship or, perhaps, making it to the finals.

Continuing to perplex the minds of prognosticators is what the selection committee will do with Dallas Baptist and Missouri State. The titans of the Missouri Valley Conference are staking claims to be awarded a national seed, as the Patriots remain at the top of the RPI rankings, while the Bears won their season series vs. Dallas Baptist and won the MVC’s regular season title by three games.

As projected last week, there are only two host sites located west of the Rockies, which will, likely, send three PAC-12 teams heading to the Central Time Zone for regional play.

Maryland’s late-season swoon continued as the Terrapins lost two of three at Northwestern and closed out the regular season losing seven of their final 11 games to drop out of the projection. Liberty is, also, on the outside looking in this week. The Flames defeated Maryland in a mid-week tilt, but lost two of three at home to High Point. Replacing Maryland and Liberty, this week, are Indiana and Southern Mississippi. The Hoosiers closed the regular season winning nine of ten games, including a sweep of Ohio State at Bart Kaufman Field in Bloomington. Meanwhile, the Golden Eagles have won 13 games in a row and head into the Conference USA Tournament as one of the hottest teams in the nation.

Teams projected, this week, to hear their name called on Selection Monday, but could be in trouble in the eyes of the selection committee include East Carolina, Nebraska and UNC Wilmington. The Pirates are 2-7 against the RPI Top-25 and 5-10 vs. the RPI Top-50. The Cornhuskers, only 9-14 in the Big Ten, are winless in four games vs. the RPI Top-25 and are 2-10 vs. the Top-50 while the Seahawks have lost all seven games vs. the RPI Top-25 and are 1-10 vs. RPI Top-50 teams.

Three teams had their tickets punched to the NCAA Tournament over the weekend. Texas Southern gets the auto-bid for the SWAC, Florida A&M will represent the MEAC and Lehigh stunned Navy to win The Patriot. These three teams join Columbia, who won the Ivy League Championship last weekend.Last Five Teams In:
Michigan State
Southern Mississippi
UNC Wilmington
California
North Carolina State

First Five Teams Out:
UC Irvine
Alabama
Central Florida
Liberty
Connecticut

Next Five Teams Out:
Louisiana-Lafayette
Kentucky
Clemson
Missouri
Duke

This week’s projection (with RPI through games of May 17):

(1) Baton Rouge Regional
LSU (5)
Georgia Tech (27)
Tulane (37)
Mercer (130)

Houston Regional
Houston (15)
Mississippi (24)
California (43)
Texas Southern (158)

(8) Coral Gables Regional
Miami-Florida (2)
South Florida (25)
UNC Wilmington (44)
Bryant (168)

Charleston Regional
College of Charleston (15)
Coastal Carolina (20)
North Carolina State (40)
Columbia (65)

(5) Champaign Regional
Illinois (10)
Bradley (21)
North Florida (45)
St. Louis (86)

Stillwater Regional
Oklahoma State (13)
Oregon State (32)
Oral Roberts (41)
Stony Brook (64)

(4) Louisville Regional
Louisville (9)
Auburn (23)
Indiana (35)
Wright State (61)

Nashville Regional
Vanderbilt (12)
Radford (18)
Nebraska (39)
South Alabama (84)

(3) Los Angeles Regional
UCLA (3)
Cal State Fullerton (31)
Notre Dame (34)
Seattle (248)

Santa Barbara Regional
UC Santa Barbara (11)
USC (22)
Nevada (46)
San Diego (83)

(6) College Station Regional
Texas A&M (6)
Rice (26)
Michigan State (48)
Rider (94)

Springfield Regional
Missouri State (8)
Iowa (29)
Southern Mississippi (47)
Southeast Missouri State (118)

(7) Gainesville Regional
Florida (7)
Virginia (19)
East Carolina (36)
Lehigh (239)

Tallahassee Regional
Florida State (14)
Florida Atlantic (16)
Southeastern Louisiana (42)
Florida A&M (226)

(2) Fort Worth Regional
TCU (4)
North Carolina (28)
Arkansas (38)
Central Michigan (91)

Dallas Regional
Dallas Baptist (1)
Ohio State (30)
Arizona State (33)
St. John’s (79)

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