Clemson Regional Announced

One day after being awarded one of the 16 NCAA Regionals, the Clemson baseball team learned the other three teams in its bracket. And two of the three teams have ties to the Tigers or head coach Jack Leggett.

Joining Clemson in its regional is No. 2-seed College of Charleston (47-13), No. 3-seed Oral Roberts (40-18) and No. 4-seed North Carolina A&T (27-25). The No. 1 seeded Tigers (39-21) will take on the Aggies at 7 p.m. Friday at Doug Kingsmore Stadium, while the Cougars play Oral Roberts earlier in the day at 3 p.m.

While on the surface it may seem Clemson is the heavy favorite, Leggett isn't thinking that way.

"Each team is coming in here with some type of momentum," he said. "If they're an at-large team, they've had a great season and been consistent all season long. If they won their conference tournament like North Carolina A&T, then they certainly come in here with some momentum and confidence. …

"Oral Roberts beat Miami twice during the course of the year and split with them. North Carolina A&T has got a real good frontline pitcher. The whole regional itself has got the makings of some real good competition. We're going to have to go out there and win it on the field and the same thing goes with those other teams."

N.C. A&T is making its first-ever appearance in the NCAA Tournament after winning the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Tournament all the way back on May 1. The Aggies have played one game since the first of May and that was against ACC Tournament winner Virginia on May 16. The Cavaliers won 2-0.

So it wouldn't be surprise if N.C. A&T is a little rusty. But Leggett fully expects their best, especially since he knows their head coach real, real well and they have a starting pitcher with some gaudy numbers.

Keith Shumate played for Leggett when he was the coach at Western Carolina. Also, Michael Hauff has an 8-4 record with a 2.74 ERA. He has 129 strikeouts in 101.2 innings pitched.

"They'll be well coached, that's the first thing I know," Leggett said. "They'll be well disciplined. (Shumate) was around me at Western Carolina for four years, so he probably knows how I think. It's going to be a good challenge for us and I'm sure he's got them playing well."

The Tigers will most likely counter with starting pitcher Stephan Farris (6-4, 2.55 ERA).

College of Charleston, which is coached by former Clemson player and assistant coach John Pawlowski, is making its second straight NCAA appearance. The Cougars lost to Clemson in their only meeting this year.

The Tigers won 8-5 on May 17 and beat College of Charleston's top pitcher.

"They're very good and very fast," Leggett said. "The three hitters at the top of the order are extremely fast and they've got a power guy after that in (Chris) Campbell. They've got an outstanding team and they've got pitching."

Oral Roberts is making its 17th tournament appearance after winning the Mid-Continent for the eighth consecutive year. The Golden Eagles put together a solid season after doing well against other NCAA Tournament teams, which included beating Miami twice and Baylor once.

The Golden Eagles ranked in the Top 10 nationally with a 2.86 earned run average. The staff is led by senior All-American Dennis Bigley, who leads the Mid-Con in ERA (1.47), wins (11), complete games (7), shutouts (5) and opponent's batting average (.188). Joining Bigley on the mound will be junior Taylor McIntyre, who registered the sixth no-hitter in school history May 20 against Chicago State.

The winner of the Clemson Regional will face the winner of the Baylor Regional, which has No. 4 national seed Baylor (39-21), No. 2-seed TCU (40-18), No. 3-seed Stanford (32-23) and No. 4 seed UT-San Antonio (27-32).

But Leggett hopes his team isn't done in the Super Regional and continues all the way to the College World Series.

"The only thing good about not having won the ACC championship is that you still have another chance," Leggett said. "You don't have another chance after these tournaments. The finality of the season is always the worst week of my life each year." Top Stories