College Baseball Top 16: May 5th

It was a pretty uneventful week in the world of college baseball, but luckily, that’s all about to change as most teams only have two weeks left of regular season play before conference tournaments begin.

Even though there were no enormous matchups around the country, some surprising results still happened, resulting in some shifting around in this week’s rankings.

In case you missed it, here’s where the teams were last week.

1. LSU Tigers (40-8, Prev. 1)

The Tigers were a 12-inning Sunday game away from a sweep at Mississippi State this past weekend. Now they get a decent Missouri team coming to Baton Rouge this weekend. Those games will be on SEC Network.

2. Louisville Cardinals (36-11, Prev. 3)

After getting dominated by Clemson in the first game of the series, Louisville stormed back to take the final two games and the series. The national series of the week is undoubtedly Louisville and Florida State, as the Seminoles travel to Jim Patterson Stadium for three games.

3. UCLA Bruins (33-11, Prev. 2)

UCLA struggled a bit this week with Gonzaga, but still pulled out a series win. A big weekend awaits them as well as they travel to Phoenix to take on the Pac-12’s second place team in Arizona State. The Bruins have a chance to essentially clinch the conference with a strong showing against the Sun Devils.

4. Texas A&M Aggies (41-7, Prev. 4)

And here we have our first sweep of the weekend, as the Aggies went into Knoxville and swept the Vols. South Carolina is next up for Texas A&M.

5. Florida State Seminoles (35-14, Prev. 5)

FSU can certainly lock up a top-eight national seed with a series win in Louisville this weekend. That’s definitely THE series to keep an eye on.

6. Illinois Illini (40-6-1, Prev. 7)

Illinois has now won 21-straight games, which is crazy, and is also a school record extended as each game passes. The Illini go untested this weekend with Rutgers before closing out the regular season with a tougher challenge against Nebraska. It’s possible this team finishes the regular season on a 27-game winning streak.

7. TCU Horned Frogs (37-9, Prev. 6)

TCU swept West Virginia, but did lose a midweek game to Dallas Baptist. The Horned Frogs take on Kansas this weekend as they continue to take advantage of a relatively week Big 12 schedule.

8. UC-Santa Barbara Gauchos (34-10-1, Prev. 9)

A lot of close wins over UC-Davis, but wins nonetheless. Cal State Fullerton and UC-Irvine are on the docket over the next two weekends, which will be enormous series for UCSB and their quest for a Big West title, and a possible national seed.

9. Vanderbilt Commodores (35-14, Prev. 11)

Another interesting series this weekend as Vanderbilt hosts the Florida Gators for three games starting on Thursday. Vandy is coming off two wins against Kentucky, and needing to make a statement.

10. Florida Gators (35-13, Prev. 8)

The Gators got smacked by Georgia in the first game of the series, but bounced back to win the series with victories by the scores of 3-2 and 7-4. Both these teams need to make this series close, because if one of them gets knocked around by the other, they might fall out of the regional host picture.

11. Miami (FL) Hurricanes (34-13, Prev. 13)

Miami’s problem is that they don’t have any tough opponents left. The Canes did go sweep Pittsburgh this weekend, and could benefit from other teams in front of them beating each other up.

12. USC Trojans (32-14, Prev. 10)

USC almost got out of Utah with a sweep, but blew it late on Sunday to take a tough loss to the worst team in the Pac-12. The Trojans have a pretty good resume so far this year, but are starting to take on losses to bad teams at bad times.

13. Oklahoma State Cowboys (31-15, Prev. 14)

In a weak Big 12, OSU and TCU have separated themselves from the rest of the conference. The Cowboys took care of Oklahoma in the first two games of Bedlam this weekend, but the Sooners got the third game. OSU’s toughest game remaining is May 12th against Dallas Baptist, before maybe facing TCU in the Big 12 tournament.

14. Dallas Baptist Patriots (36-9, Prev. 15)

A win over TCU and a sweep of Charlotte helps bolster the Patriots’ claim to the Top 16. It’s still baffling that they’re first in the RPI, but they are definitely there, and that will certainly help their case when the selection committee chooses regional hosts.

15. Florida Atlantic Owls (35-11, Prev. 16)

This is the week where we find out just how good either FAU or Rice are, as they’ll play each other in Boca Raton. The competition around the 16 spot is not strong right now, so a surprise team like FAU can certainly play itself into a regional host position.

16. Rice Owls (29-16, Prev. NR)

Rice has won seven of their last eight games to squeak themselves into the Top 16 ahead of their weekend trip to FAU.

Dropped out: Arizona State (29-15)

Also considered: Arizona State, Missouri State (34-10), Iowa (33-12), Oregon State (29-14)

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