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Jun 6, 2024 11:59 pm

NCAA baseball super regionals primer: Tennessee favored to capture title

Tennessee

Ten top seeds held serve. Five No. 3 seeds emerged.

And then there’s Evansville, just the ninth No. 4 regional seed to ever advance to the NCAA DI baseball super regionals, which begin on Friday and will pare the field of 16 remaining schools to eight by Monday.

Evansville is making its first-ever super regional appearance after ousting East Carolina in the Greenville regional. It will face Tennessee, the tournament’s top overall seed and BetMGM’s favorite to capture the national championship at plus-250.

Tennessee has hit 159 home runs this season, the most in Division I. The Volunteers slugged as many homers during regionals (12) as total runs their pitchers allowed.

Texas A&M has the second-best title odds at plus-350. The Aggies will square off against Oregon at Bryan-College Station, Texas.

Three other SEC schools will compete for a spot in the College World Series, which begins June 14 in Omaha, Neb. Kentucky will host Oregon State in Lexington; Georgia will welcome North Carolina State in Athens; and Florida will face a road test at Clemson.

NC State and Clemson are two of the Atlantic Coast Conference’s five representatives. Florida State will face UConn in Tallahassee, Fla., while Virginia will host Kansas State in Charlottesville. In Chapel Hill, North Carolina welcomes West Virginia, which is making its first super regional appearance.

Florida State has flipped its 23-31 finish last season into a 46-15 mark this year to reach the super regionals for the 18th time in the format’s 25 seasons. Clemson and Georgia are back in the super regionals for the first time in 14 and 16 years, respectively, while Kansas State is appearing for the second time in school history.

None of the four most recent national champions remain in this year’s tournament. North Carolina dethroned LSU, last year’s title winner, in an extra-inning thriller to decide the Chapel Hill Regional on Monday.

Oregon State, which won in 2018, is the most recent champion still playing. The Beavers scored 26 runs in three games to sweep this year’s Corvallis Regional.

Kansas State steamrolled through the Fayetteville Regional, sweeping its three games by a combined score of 33-12. Kentucky won the Lexington opener 10-8 before its pitching staff clamped down to allow one run over the next two games to propel the Wildcats into the final 16.

Texas A&M sandwiched a pair of blowouts around a tight win over Texas, while Clemson and Florida State each racked up 12 runs to clinch their respective regionals.

Georgia survived a 10-inning battle with Georgia Tech in the Athens Regional’s decisive game, and Florida prevailed in three straight elimination games to win at Stillwater.

NC State, Virginia and West Virginia each cruised to sweeps, while Oregon won its three games at Santa Barbara by a combined five runs. UConn rebounded from a loss to Oklahoma to beat the Sooners 7-1 to win the Norman Regional.

The super regionals feature eight best-of-three series played at campus sites. ESPN’s networks will broadcast each game.

Four games will be played on Friday, while eight are set for Saturday. At least four games are scheduled for Sunday, which could also feature as many as four elimination games if necessary.

Monday’s slate, if there is one, would consist of one to four elimination games.

–Field Level Media

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