(1) Miami Hurricanes (39-14-1)
ROUNDING THE BASES: Despite being slighted in the national polls the Hurricanes have been a model of consistency, winning 15 of their first 18 and going 11-2 – including a series win over nationally ranked Long Beach State- to close out the regular season.
HEADING FOR HOME: Miami, in the postseason for the 31st consecutive season, has advanced to the College World Series 15 of the 18 years they have hosted a regional. The Hurricanes have a postseason record of 68-10 (.872) at Mark Light Field, including a 16-game playoff winning-streak at home dating back to 1998.
RUN DOWN: UM has the kind of speed (OF Danny Figueroa, 34 SBs), pop (SS Ryan Braun, 14 HRs) and run-producing ( 3B Gaby Sanchez, 50 RBIs) in it's line-up that will be difficult to match, especially playing at home. Only question surrounding the Hurricanes might be the depth in their pitching rotation beyond J. D. Cockroft (10-2, 2.40 ERA) and Brandon Camardese (9-0, 4.42). "It starts and ends with pitching. Whether it's here or with the New York Yankees," says UM coach Jim Morris
(2) Florida Atlantic (46-14)
ROUNDING THE BASES: The Owls (.320 BA, 64 HRs) will bring a potent offense that could light up the scoreboard quickly into Coral Gables, starting with sophomore outfielder Jeff Florentino. Florentino, who hit a team-leading .386 during the regular season, was named to the All- Conference Team of the Atlantic Sun Championships after going 8-for-16 with a .586 on-base percentage. Florentino also ranked first for the Owls in stolen bases (14), home runs (14), RBIs (68) and slugging percentage (.632).
HEADING FOR HOME: Florida Atlantic is making its fourth NCAA regional appearance in the last five years. The Owls are participating in a UM hosted regional for the third time since 1999. FAU was a combined 6-0 against Bethune-Cookman and Miami this season. FAU and UF have not met since 2001, a 10-0 Gator victory in Gainesville. Florida leads the all-time series 11-4.
RUN DOWN: Junior Rusty Brown, who led the Atlantic Sun in batting average, finished the regular season hitting .373 with 10 home runs and 64 RBIs. The Owls have what many teams crave this time of year- lots of pitching. Senior Danny Core (9-2, 3.33) and juniors Randy Beam (13-1, 2.50), Travis NeSmith (7-2, 3.95) and Chris Pillsbury have guided the staff to a 3.21 team ERA. Sophomore infielder Derek Hutton, the son of Florida Marlins television analysis and former big leaguer Tommy Hutton, is hitting .294 with 32 RBIs and 8 SBs.
(3) Florida (34-19-1)
ROUNDING THE BASES: The Gators earned an at-large berth despite missing the eight-team SEC Championships by half game. But they're probably not pleased to see the Hurricanes in the regional. Miami moved on to the Super Regional last season after eliminating the Gators on their home field thanks to a Jim Burt's run-scoring double. UM and UF split two games during the regular season this year.
HEADING FOR HOME: Not too many people expected the Gators to go anywhere but home for the postseason- including themselves. Florida coach Pat McMahon, who has a lifetime record of 17-16 in regional competition, had already started sending players off for the summer when news came that the Gators had been selected for the regional. The Gators are one of eight SEC schools to get regional invitations while they have participated in seven regionals in the last eight seasons UF has advanced to the College World Series just twice (1996, 98).
RUN DOWN: Florida (.314 BA, 65 HRs) handles the aluminum well and could factor deep into the weekend if their offense responds. Sophomore infielder CJ Smith leads the way with 16 HRs and 60 RBIs, while senior catcher Brian Rose, a Miami Killian graduate, has proven to be a tough out with 12 HRs, 45 RBIs and a .362 batting average. Junior outfielder Ben Harrison (10 HRs, 53 RBIs, .339) and senior Mario Garza (9 HRs, 54 RBIs, .307 BA) are also a big part of the line-up. Sophomore pitcher Justin Hoyman (8-5, 3.22 ERA) is crucial to Florida's chances of winning the regional.
(4) Bethune-Cookman (30-26)
ROUNDING THE BASES: The Wildcats won fifth consecutive MEAC title and became the first team in conference history to win the championship out of the loser's bracket. Bethune Cookman defeated North Carolina A&T and Florida A&M twice on the final day to win the championship.
HEADING FOR HOME: Senior John Gragg has carried the Wildcats most of the season, hitting a team-leading .417 with 3 home runs and 60 RBIs, while compiling a 9-3 record and 3.24 ERA on the mound. Junior outfielder Roberto Rodriguez has provided the power with 9 home runs and 44 RBIs (.298 BA). Gragg made the All-Tournament Team of the MEAC championships along with sophomore outfielder Sebastian Boucher and junior third baseman Carlos Garcia.
RUN DOWN: Besides Gragg the Wildcats will rely on junior Mumba Rivera (6-4, 2.99) and Jahson Page (4-4. 5.60) for some quality innings. The Wildcats were 8-12 on the road this season.
Regional Team Capsules
Canes Time Top Stories
Miami vs. Virginia Tech HighlightsJerod Evans had 357 yards of total offense and 3 scores to lead the Hokies to a 37-16 win over the Hurricanes. Travon McMillian rushed for 131 yards and Bucky Hodges caught 2 TDs…
Canes TimeThursday at 9:59 PM
Post Virginia Tech: Mark RichtRead on to see everything head coach Mark Richt was saying following his team's loss to Virginia Tech Thursday night.
Canes TimeThursday at 9:54 PM
Virginia Tech 37 , Miami 16Here are some game notes from Miami's 21-point loss to the Hokies.
Canes TimeThursday at 9:52 PM
State of the Canes: DefenseThe Hurricanes are 4-2 and preparing to play at Virginia Tech Thursday night. Read on for a complete analysis of Miami's defense at this point in the season.
Canes TimeTuesday at 8:15 PM
State of the Canes: OffenseThe Hurricanes are 4-2 and preparing to play at Virginia Tech Thursday night. Read on for a complete analysis of Miami's offense at this point in the season.
Canes TimeTuesday at 7:10 PM