With just one weekend of play remaining in the regular season for Pacific-12 Conference baseball teams, D1Baseball.com projects five teams from the league to make the 64-team College World Series.
The UCLA Bruins have been ranked No. 1 by D1Baseball.com for 10 straight weeks now, and they should be the top overall seed in the field, hosting a regional in the process. No. 5 Stanford and No. 12 Oregon State—the defending national champions—also are expected to get regionals on their home fields.
Arizona State and California are unranked, but both teams rate as second seeds in regional play, according to D1Baseball.com.
Meanwhile, the race for the conference title in the Pac-12 is still being contested: The Bruins are 22-5 in league games, while Stanford is 20-6. UCLA must travel to Eugene to face the ninth-place Ducks, while the Cardinal fly to face fourth-place Arizona State in Tempe.
The Beavers, also 20-6 in conference, finish with eighth-place USC at home, so the league championship may not be decided until the final out is made over Memorial Day weekend. Those in the Conference of (real NCAA) Champions never sleep, of course … not with a trophy on the line.
ASU and Cal actually are tied for fourth place in the standings with 15-11 conference marks right now, and the Golden Bears travel to Seattle to play sixth-place Washington. It’s mostly just for bragging rights, but both teams would like to finish the regular season with some momentum heading into the CWS.
There is no Pacific-12 Conference Tournament at the end of the season like some of the other leagues, so the regular-season champion is the sole title winner for the sport. Depending on perceived merit, the NCAA then selects 64 teams for the double-elimination College World Series, starting with 16 regional competitions and followed by Super Regional play, and then on to the CWS finals (eight teams) in Omaha.
How this season will turn out is anyone’s guess, but with at least five of the top teams in the country ready for postseason play already, the Pac-12 will be tough to contend with on the road to Omaha.
Follow Pac-12 baseball throughout the College World Series right here!