The Dust Settles
Well, it became official Monday. Auburn didn't get an invite to the NCAA Postseason. Was is Surprising? Not really.
Although the NCAA did make some pretty surprising choices and seedings. In case you were wondering, the Final Bracket looks like this:
The biggest surprise? Probably Baylor and Oklahoma State. That inclusion (and the exclusion of Rhode Island and Dallas Baptist) seems to have most CB Sportswriters up in arms.
That's the only beef I think Auburn fans can have with the Committee. Why were those teams included and Auburn was left out. I'll let ESPN explain it a bit better:
The strangest two inclusions were both from the Big 12 -- Oklahoma State and Baylor. The Cowboys posted a gaudy RPI, but won just two of nine conference series and failed to qualify for the Big 12 tournament. This is the sixth time that a team made the big dance while finishing outside the top eight in its conference; the other instances all involved the SEC, and none of these teams advanced to the super regionals.
Note the bolded Text. It's one thing for an SEC school to be included, and not make the conference tournament. There are 12 Teams in SEC Baseball. So you have 4 teams who don't make it to Hoover. In the Big XII (baseball at least) there are only 10 teams (Iowa St. is a club team/Colorado doesn't play). Meaning if you don't make their Conference tournament, you are one of the bottom 2 teams in the league.
Texas Tech probably has a bigger gripe than Auburn does. At least they made their conference postseason (yet were excluded from the NCAA).
SOME GOODS NEWS, AT LEAST
For those Auburn fans who like to see Alabama suffer, Monday gave a little vindication. Taking 2 of 3 from the Tide cost them a Regional Host slot, and forced them to go to Clemson. So yeah, there's that.
Also, It's not necessarily a bad thing Auburn didn't make the NCAA tournament without going to Hoover. Tom Slater did that same thing in Hoover (and it probably bought him an extra year, and some unneeded apathy).
It sets a precedent. Go to Hoover, then think about the NCAA. Hoover first and foremost. At least the 2010 Tigers can look back and be even hungrier for Hoover. Knowing that without that stop on I-65, the Road to Omaha ends quickly.
DON'T TRY TO UNDERSTAND THE NCAA SELECTION
It's maddening really. For baseball, the NCAA has this weird, "Oh we'll stick 3 or 4 close (geographically, teams together) and then screw out some Northern School". The NCAA, worried about Money/Fans/Travel/etc, did a pretty head scratching job grouping these schools together and finding ones close to each other.
|REGIONAL||TEAM 2 (Mileage)||TEAM 3 (Mileage)||TEAM 4 (Mileage)||TOTAL||AVG||AVG (-Y)|
|AUSTIN||Tex St. (33)||BC (1953)||Army (1778)||3764||1254||905|
|Ft Worth||TAMU (176)||Or. St (2201)||WSU (1025)||3402||1134||600|
|Atlanta||Elon (348)||USM (381)||GSU (2)||559||186||89|
|Gainesville||Miami (344)||JU (72)||BCC (102)||518||172||87|
|TEMPE||ORU (1121)||Cal Poly (582)||KSU (2067)||3770||1256||851|
|CLEMSON||Bama (332)||OK St (984)||TTU (284)||1600||533||380|
|GREENVILLE||USC (275)||GMU (277)||Bing (581)||1133||377||276|
|CHAPEL HILL||CCU (208)||KU (1087)||Dartmouth (760)||2055||685||968|
|FULLERTON||GSU (2372)||Zaga (1397)||Utah (680)||4449||1483||1038|
|LOUISVILLE||MTSU (205)||Vandy (175)||Indiana (104)||484||161||139|
|TALLAHASSEE||UGA (286)||Oh St (838)||Marist (1168)||2292||764||562|
|NORMAN||Ark (252)||WSU (1840)||Wichita (180)||2572||857||366|
|IRVINE||UVA (2549)||SDSU (82)||Fresno (260)||2891||963||171|
|OXFORD||Mizzou (483)||WKU (318)||Monmouth (1169)||1970||656||400|
|HOUSTON||KSU (733)||XU (1072)||SHSU (69)||1874||624||401|
|BATON ROUGE||Minnesota (1210)||Baylor (452)||Southern (9)||1671||557||230|
Who did Virginia piss off? The 'Hoos win the ACC Tournament and their reward? Fly across the country to face UC Irvine in the Toughest Regional. You get to travel farther than any other school (Though Georgia Southern has an equal beef, being a #2 Seed but getting shoved to Fullerton, CA).
Oh and Georgia State says "Thank You". Their trip to the Regional? All of 2 miles in Downtown Atlanta.
AND THE AUBURN ANGLE:
Of the 64 Teams in the Dance, Auburn played 13:
Alabama (2-1), Arkansas (0-3), Florida (1-2), LSU (0-3), Mississippi (0-3), South Carolina (1-2), Vanderbilt (2-1)
Florida St (1-2), Georgia St (1-0), Elon (1-2) Ga. Southern (1-0), Western Ky (1-0), Bethune-Cookman (1-0)
Going a combined 12-16 against the field.