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Big 12 Baseball Weekly Review - March 3, 2008

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Most of the story links below are from the official athletic department web sites, because there still aren't a lot of resources that promptly cover college baseball. I'll be linking to blogs and other off-the-beaten-path sites, so if you're running a Big 12 site and covering baseball, please let me know.
Rice owned the Big 12 this week, beating Oklahoma, Texas, and Texas Tech at the Minute Maid College tournament in Houston. Other Big 12 teams had some nice wins. Missouri went 3-1 in the San Diego tournament while Texas A&M went undefeated for the week. Baylor remains the lone undefeated Big 12 team, while Kansas and Texas Tech were the losers on the week.

Big 12 Baseball Weekly Review

Overall Big 12 win-loss records are updated on the right sidebar. Win-loss for the week is included below.

Big 12 Rankings this Week
National Collegiate Baseball Writers - Pre-Season Poll: Texas, 6th; Missouri, 17th; Texas A&M, 20th; Baylor, 26th; Oklahoma State, 27th
Baseball America Top 25 - Missouri, 5th; Baylor, 13th; Texas, 14th; Oklahoma State, 21st; Texas A&M, dropped out
Collegiate Baseball Top 25 - Texas, 6th; Missouri, 15th; Baylor, 24th; Texas A&M, 28th

When I refer to rankings below, I'll be using Baseball America's ranking.
Baylor 4-0 Tue., Feb. 26 Baylor 10, Texas Southern 1
Fri., Feb. 29 QTI Baylor Classic - Baylor 20, Illinois 6
Sat., Mar. 1 QTI Baylor Classic - Baylor 5, Illinois-Chicago 4
Sun., Mar. 2 QTI Baylor Classic - Baylor 4, Stephen F. Austin 3

Baylor showed this week why they're one of the top teams in the Big 12. They easily handle Texas Southern mid-week, then they win their own tournament. Granted, not the greatest competition in Division IA, but they did take care of business.
Baylor is undefeated, and is off to their best start since 1993. Key to Baylor's success is winning one-run games, of which they've won five out of seven. Regardless of the competition, Baylor is finding ways to win. Will they contend for the Big 12?
Kansas 2-3 Wed., Feb. 27 Arkansas 2, Kansas 1
Fri., Feb. 29 Music City Classic- Vanderbilt 7, Kansas 1
Sat., Mar. 1 Music City Classic - Kansas 12, Xavier 4
Sun., Mar. 2 Music City Classic - Kansas 9, Iowa 5

This week Kansas played a couple of the better teams in the nation in Arkansas and Vanderbilt at Vandy's Music City Classic Tournament. Unfortunately, they were 0-2 against them but had a decent mid-week showing against the Razorbacks, i.e they weren't blown out.
Kansas came into Sunday with the lowest team batting average in the Big 12 at .238. Perhaps the output against Xavier and Iowa is a good sign that things are turning around. Things should brighten up as they face LeMoyne mid-week and North Dakota State in a series next weekend.
Kansas State 3-1 Thu., Feb. 28 Lamar Classic - Arkansas State 2, Kansas State 1
Fri., Feb. 29 Lamar Classic - Kansas State 8, Michigan State 0
Sat., Mar. 1 Lamar Classic - Kansas State 4, Lamar 1
Sun., Mar. 2 Lamar Classic - Kansas State 10, Michigan State 9

Kansas State is another team that's been struggling on offense, although they had decent output against a Sparty team, beating them twice in the Lamar Classic Tournament. Unfortunately, the Wildcats wasted a great eight-inning effort by pitcher Brad Hutt, scoring only one run in their loss to the Arkansas State Indians.
Kansas State has UT-San Antonio mid-week and LeMoyne in a four-game series next weekend. They should pick up some games against these guys in preparing themselves for Big 12 play.
Missouri 3-2 Mon., Feb. 25 UCF 10, Missouri 9
Fri., Feb. 29 University of San Diego Tournament - Missouri 7, California 5
Fri., Feb. 29 University of San Diego Tournament - Missouri 3, San Diego State 1
Sat., Mar. 1 University of San Diego Tournament - San Diego 5, Missouri 4
Sun., Mar. 2 University of San Diego Tournament - Missouri 6, Cal Poly 3

Missouri had a disappointing loss Monday, then went off to San Diego for the USD tourney. They split games with 17th-ranked San Diego. Tiger pitcher Aaron Crow struck out 10 batters for his second win of the year over Cal, allowing three runs on eight hits in five innings. Then Ian Berger pitched brilliantly for 7.1 innings against San Diego, striking out five, not allowing a walk and giving up only one run on six hits.
A decent week for Mizzou on the road, especially in going 3-1 over the weekend and picking up some RPI wins against good opponents.
Missouri's home opener comes this next week against Western Illinois.
Nebraska 4-0 Fri., Feb. 29 Nebraska 3, UC Riverside 2
Sat., Mar. 1 Nebraska 10, UC Riverside 4
Sat., Mar. 1 Nebraska 5, UC Riverside 2
Sun., Mar. 2 Nebraska 13 - Riverside 1

Nice showing by Nebraska this week end, sweeping UC Riverside. The Huskers held up against UCR's only experienced pitcher and fans got to enjoy some good winter weather Saturday. The Huskers offense hammered the ball and the rest of the pitching staff held UCR's offense in check.
The Cornhuskers get a series against Northern Colorado next weekend. Given their two wins over the Aggies last weekend, Northern Colorado may be a much-improved team.
Oklahoma 4-1 Tue., Feb. 26 Oklahoma 8, Arkansas - Pine Bluff 2
Wed., Feb. 27 Oklahoma 9, Arkansas - Pine Bluff 3
Fri., Feb. 29 Minute Maid College Classic - Rice 7, Oklahoma 2
Sat., Mar. 1 Minute Maid College Classic - Oklahoma 8, Houston 5 (10)
Sun., Mar. 2 Minute Maid College Classic - Oklahoma 2, Tennessee 0

After getting some mid-week work against APB, Oklahoma competed in the Minute Maid tournament at Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas, along with Rice, Houston, Texas, Oklahoma, Texas Tech, Tennessee. A good week for the Sooners, getting a win over the Vols and Cougars.
Next up for Oklahoma - a mid-week series against North Dakota State and then a series against Western Illinois next weekend. Lots of wins coming up for the Sooners.
Oklahoma State 3-1 Thu., Feb. 28 South Florida Tournament - Oklahoma State 7, South Florida 2
Fri., Feb. 29 South Florida Tournament - Oklahoma State 13, Northwestern 3
Sat., Mar. 1 South Florida Tournament - Northwestern 14, Oklahoma State 12 (10)
Sun., Mar. 2 South Florida Tournament - Oklahoma State 14, South Florida 3

Northwestern handed the Cowboys their first loss of the year over the weekend. The game was tied 10-10 going into the ninth when Northwestern took a two-run lead. The Cowboys fought back, tying the game, but in the top of the 10th inning the Wildcats had a base hit that drove in two RBI's. Okie State's big bats continue to score.
Even with the loss, Oklahoma State is off to their best start since 1995. Things get tough next weekend as they head to San Diego for the San Diego State tournament against Loyola, San Diego State, San Diego and Santa Clara.
Texas 4-1 Tue., Feb. 26 Texas 10, UTPA 3
Wed., Feb. 27 Texas 5, UTPA 0
Fri., Feb. 29 Minute Maid College Classic - Tennessee 5, Texas 4
Sat., Mar. 1 Minute Maid College Classic - Rice 10, Texas 4
Sun., Mar. 2 Minute Maid College Classic - Texas 8, Houston 7 (10)

Texas got some games in beating UT-Pan-American mid-week. Not a real great weekend for the Longhorns. The Volunteers won the first meeting ever with Texas as Texas committed four errors. Then the Longhorns had five errors against Rice in another loss.
In a late Sunday game, Houston took the Longhorns to 10 innings before losing. The Cougars scored two runs in the top of the ninth to tie the game. Then in the 10th, the Longhorns loaded the bases when Rowe got a single and RBI as Hernandez scored.
Texas had two errors in the game, giving them 11 over three games. Not the kind of baseball Augie Garrido wants them playing and they should drop in the rankings this week.
The Longhorns have a two-game series against TAMU-Corpus Christi and then entertain Stanford at home next weekend.
Texas A&M 5-0 Tue., Feb. 26 Texas A&M 8, McNeese State
Wed., Feb. 27 Texas A&M 8, McNeese State 4
Fri., Feb. 29 Domino's Pizza Aggie Baseball Classic - Texas A&M 8, Ohio State 5
Sat., Mar. 1 Domino's Pizza Aggie Baseball Classic - Texas A&M 15, Arkansas 7
Sun., Mar. 2 Domino's Pizza Aggie Baseball Classic - Texas A&M 7, Louisiana Tech 4

The Aggies won their own tournament and went undefeated for the week, picking up wins against Arkansas, Ohio State and Louisiana Tech.
Next up - a mid-week series against Nicholls State, and then they entertain Rutgers at home.
Texas Tech 2-3 Mon., Feb. 25 Texas Tech 16, UT-San Antonio 6
Wed., Feb. 27 New Mexico 7, Texas Tech 3
Fri., Feb. 29 Minute Maid College Classic - Houston 5, Texas Tech 4
Sat., Mar. 1 Minute Maid College Classic - Texas Tech 7, Tennessee 3
Sun., Mar. 2 Minute Maid College Classic - Rice 5, Texas Tech 4

Texas Tech continues to struggle, although they did pick up a nice win over the SEC in beating Tennessee.
Central Arkansas comes to Lubbock mid-week, and then Illinois plays a series next weekend. Tech needs to win most of these games and pick up some confidence before Big 12 play starts.