Michael Woods

Hogs back in top 15

Check out where Arkansas is in the rankings, RPI and our composite poll this week.

FAYETTEVILLE -- Arkansas finally won an SEC series last weekend and it resulted in a small bump in the rankings.

After winning two of three games at home against Vanderbilt, the Razorbacks are up to No. 15 in the HawgsDaily composite poll, which compiles the six major college baseball polls into one ranking.

They maintained their ranking to two of the polls - Collegiate Baseball (No. 15) and USA Today coaches (No. 16) - but moved up in the other four. The biggest jump came in the Baseball America poll, where Arkansas moved up two spots to No. 16.

The Razorbacks' ranking increased by one in the D1Baseball.com (No. 17), NCBWA (No. 16) and Perfect Game (No. 14) polls.

Despite it fluctuating throughout the week and getting as high as No. 14, Arkansas' RPI remains at No. 18. Interestingly, the Commodores saw their RPI increase by four to No. 21 after winning just one of three on the road.

Arkansas is hoping it will get a similar benefit from its road trip to Texas A&M (RPI No. 35) for the final series of the regular season beginning Thursday.

One of the criteria in the "hosting-a-regional checklist" we revealed last week is a top-16 RPI ranking, which means the Razorbacks still need to move up at least two spots. With the three games against the Aggies and the SEC Tournament looming, they also need at least one more regular-season SEC victory and two more total victories to hit the other two thresholds (39+ total wins, 17+ SEC wins).

Arkansas has an outside shot at winning the SEC West, as well. It needs to sweep Texas A&M and then get some help, with Mississippi State winning two of three against LSU. That would create a three-way tie in the win column, but the Razorbacks would have one fewer loss because of the Tennessee rainout and would win the title.

Nationally, the top four schools are the same, with the top three - Oregon State, Louisville and North Carolina - still being unanimous among the six human polls.

In the SEC, Florida has climbed back into the top five, with Kentucky checking in right behind the Gators at No. 6. LSU also cracked into the top 10 this week, while Mississippi State dropped out.

Coming off back-to-back sweeps, Auburn has fallen completely out of the top 25. Although the Tigers are still ranked in four of the six polls, they are so low in them that they are in the "receiving votes" section of our composite poll, at No. 29. Just two weeks ago, they were ranked No. 6.

Newcomers this week are Oklahoma from the Big 12 and Nebraska from the Big Ten.

Here is a complete rundown of the HawgsDaily composite poll (SEC teams in bold, change from last week in parenthesis):

1. Oregon State - 150 points (--)

2. Louisville - 144 (--)

3. North Carolina - 138 (--)

4. Texas Tech - 129 (--)

5. Florida - 127 (+1)

6. Kentucky - 114 (+3)

7. TCU - 113 (-2)

8. LSU - 108 (+4)

9. Long Beach State - 98 (+2)

10. Virginia - 96 (--)

11. Stanford - 94 (+2)

12. Mississippi State - 87 (-5)

13. Clemson - 79 (-6)

14. Cal State-Fullerton - 67 (+1)

15. Arkansas - 62 (+1)

16. Southern Miss - 52 (+4)

17. Arizona - 47 (--)

18. Michigan - 46 (--)

19. Wake Forest - 43 (--)

20. Missouri State - 32 (+3)

21. St. John's - 30 (--)

22. Oklahoma - 20 (+7)

23. South Florida - 14 (--)

24. Texas A&M - 13 (-2)

t-25. Kent State - 10 (--)

t-25. Nebraska - 10 (+6)

Receiving votes: BYU (8), Houston (8), Auburn (7), Coastal Carolina (2), Old Dominion (1), South Alabama (1)


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