1) America East Conference:
Stony Brook defeated Maine for the tournament championship. Maine, with a 34-21 record, might look like a bubble team, but has a terrible RPI and plays in a low-rated conference. However, a third team in this conference, Albany, with a 36-14 record, has moved itself on the NCAA bubble due to those 36 wins and a 68 RPI.
History: If Albany also receives a bid it will make history, since this conference has never had more than one team receive an NCAA Regional bid.
In: Tournament champ Stony Brook (29-25, RPI 185). Bubble: Albany (37-14, 68). Conference RPI is a low 18. (1 or 2 in NCAA with my guess being 1)
2) Atlantic Coast Conference:
Florida State defeated North Carolina Saturday and will now face Georgia Tech in the championship game. Georgia Tech only has to win one game to win the tournament. All three teams are assured of an NCAA Regional bid due to their records and their RPIs. No team, based on their performance in the tournament, enhanced their position for an NCAA Regional berth. Six teams were expected to make the Regionals and only six teams will.
In: Georgia Tech (41-17, 11), Virginia (42-13, 17), FSU (40-20, 9), Clemson (36-24, 16), North Carolina (41-19, 35) and North Carolina State (35-22 ,19). Bubble: None. Conference PRI is 4. (6 in NCAA)
3) Atlantic Sun Conference:
Florida Atlantic defeated Troy State to earn the tournament championship and the automatic bid to the NCAA Regionals. Central Florida, with 44 wins and a 29 RPI, will make the NCAA Regionals. Troy State and Stetson are squarely on the NCAA bubble.
History: This conference, despite being ranked 11th in the RPI rankings for conferences, has received three bids in 2003, 2001 and 2000 and two in 2002. Don't be surprised to see them receive three this year. If so, Troy State has the best chance of receiving the last one. Stetson, who has made the tournament the last three years, also has a chance but I don't see them getting in if Troy State does. It's possible they could get 4 in, since it happened in 1997, but I don't see it this year.
In: FAU (45-15, 33), UCF (44-16, 29). Bubble: Troy State (36-22, 69) and maybe Stetson (36-23, 95). Conference RPI is 11. (2 or 3 in NCAA with my guess being 3.)
4) Atlantic-10 Conference:
It sure didn't help that George Washington lost to Rhode Island in an elimination game Saturday. If GW had won the conference, there is no doubt that they would have been the only A-10 team that would have received an NCAA Regional bid. Now they are on the bubble and Rhode Island (35-19, 109), Richmond (33-23, 99) and St. Bonaventure (28-20, 199) are battling for the tournament crown and the automatic bid to the NCAA Regionals. None of those three had a chance to make the NCAA Regionals coming into the tournament.
History: This conference has only gotten more than one team in the NCAA Regionals once, in 2002. That year, GW won 42 games and also won the tournament. The other team that made it was Richmond, which wound up winning 53 games. By the way, GW didn't receive bids when they won 37, 38 and 37 games in 2003, 2001 and 2000. Will they earn one with that seemingly magic number of 40?
In: Tournament champ. Bubble: George Washington (40-18, 80). Conference RPI is a high 20. (1 or 2 in NCAA with my guess being 1)
5) Big East Conference:
Notre Dame defeated Boston College for the tournament championship and the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Regionals. Boston College now waits to see if they put themselves in a position for an NCAA Regionals bid. St. John's, with their wins in the tournament, probably earned themselves an NCAA Regional bid. Pittsburgh, even though they went two and out in the tournament, already had 38 wins and a decent RPI in the 6th rated RPI conference.
History: This conference got three teams in the NCAA Regionals in 2001, 2000 and 1999 and two in 2003. Usually, the only way they get three teams in is if a third team that didn't win the tournament championship had 40 or more victories. The only exception is Rutgers, which won 37 games in 1999 and still got invited to the NCAA Regionals.
In: Notre Dame (49-10, 21). Bubble: St. John's (36-21, 51), Pittsburgh (38-18, 58), Boston College (33-27, 70). Conference RPI is 6. (2 or 3 in NCAA with my guess being 3)
6) Big South Conference:
Coastal Carolina defeated Birmingham-Southern for the tournament championship and the automatic bid to the NCAA Regionals. B-S will also receive a bid. Winthrop put themselves on the bubble with their play during the tournament.
History: I couldn't find much about the conference itself, but since the only team other than CC and B-S that has a chance to make it to the NCAA Regionals is Winthrop, I looked up information about them and discovered that they have been to the NCAA three times, 1995, 1999 and 2001. All three years they were nationally ranked at some point during the year. They started out ranked 27th in the nation this year. Will the pattern continue?
In: Coastal Carolina (40-21, 41), Birmingham-Southern (46-16, 39). Bubble: Winthrop (37-23, 67). Conference RPI is 12. (2 or 3 in NCAA with my guess being 3)
7) Big Ten Conference:
Ohio State defeated Michigan for the right to play Minnesota in the championship game Saturday night. Then, on Saturday night, they defeated Minnesota, 3-2. The same two teams meet for the tournament championship Sunday. It doesn't really matter who wins it now, since the two wins put Ohio State in the NCAA Regionals. Michigan put themselves on the NCAA Regionals bubble with the loss to Ohio State.
History: Since 1998, the Big Ten has only gotten three schools into the NCAA Regionals two times, 1999 and 2000, so it's possible they could get three in this year. However, I don't see it happening with a team like Michigan, a team that has only won 34 games while losing 26 in the 13th rated RPI conference in the nation.
In: Minnesota (37-20, 53), Ohio State (36-24, 75). Bubble: Michigan (34-26, 85) . Conference RPI is 13. (1, 2 or 3 in NCAA with my guess being 2)
8) Big 12 Conference:
Finally, Baylor was eliminated with their loss to Missouri Saturday. With the win Missouri, who now plays Oklahoma State for the tournament championship, pretty much assured themselves of an NCAA Regional bid even if they don't win the tournament. Look for 7 teams to be invited to the NCAA Regionals.
In: Texas (50-13, 2), Oklahoma (37-22, 22), Texas Tech (38-19, 31), Oklahoma State (36-22, 37), Texas A&M (39-19, 18), Missouri (37-20-1, 54), Nebraska (36-23, 28). Bubble: None. Conference RPI is 2. (7 in NCAA)
9) Big West Conference:
No tournament. Cal State Fullerton, Long Beach State and UC Irvine will make the regionals. Cal Poly, UC Riverside and UC Santa Barbara are on the bubble.
History: Four of the last five years, this conference has gotten three teams in NCAA Regionals play. However, this year could be different due to how many teams have great records. Because of that, they could get four teams in.
In: Cal State Fullerton (36-20, 20) Long Beach State (36-19, 23), UC Irvine (34-20-1, 26). Bubble: Cal Poly (38-23, 78), UC Riverside (33-24, 66), UC Santa Barbara (33-21, 74). Conference RPI is 5. (4 or 5 in NCAA with my guess being 4)
10) Colonial Athletic Association:
Great news! UNC Wilmington defeated Delaware twice to win the tournament championship and the automatic bid to the NCAA Regionals. That should put Delaware out of contention for an NCAA Regional bid. George Mason, with a 39-17 record and a 50 RPI, went 2-2 in the tournament, so my guess is they have both feet firmly planted on the NCAA bubble.
History: During the last 6 years this conference has gotten 2 or more teams in the NCAA Regionals, some with worse records than George Mason's 39-17 record.
In: UNC Wilmington (38-21, 45). Bubble: George Mason (39-17, 50). Conference RPI is 10. (1 or 2 in NCAA with my guess being 2)
11) Conference USA:
More good news for MSU. Southern Miss and TCU, after winning both of their games Saturday, face each other in the tournament championship game Sunday. This should have eliminated the two team that were defeated in those games, UAB and Houston (both are now 30-29), from any NCAA Regional consideration.
History: In 2003, '01 and '99, C-USA got 4 teams in. In 2002, 5 made it. All 5 had 35 or more victories. In 2000, 3 teams made it.
12) Horizon League:
Surprisedly, Illinois-Chicago got knocked out of the tournament by Cleveland State, a team with a record of 19-32. CS now plays Youngstown State (another team that defeated Illinois-Chicago) for the tournament championship and the automatic bid to the NCAA Regionals. Even though Illinois-Chicago has won 35 victories, they play in one of the poorest RPI rated conferences in the nation, so this should remove them from any NCAA Regional consideration.
In: Either Cleveland State (19-32, ) or Youngstown State (21-30). Bubble: None. Conference RPI is 27. (1 in NCAA)
13) Ivy League:
They will only get one bid so what has happened in their tournament has no bearing on MSU's chances.
In: Princeton (27-18, 127). Bubble: None. Conference RPI is 24. (1 in NCAA)
14) Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference:
Le Moyne won the tournament championship and the NCAA Regional automatic bid by defeating Manhattan College.
In: Le Moyne (36-19, 158). Bubble: None. Conference RPI is 29. (1 in NCAA)
15) Mid-American Conference:
Kent State defeated Eastern Michigan to earn the tournament championship and the NCAA Regional automatic bid. Eastern Michigan, with a record of 32-27 and a RPI of 139, is through for the season. While Miami-Ohio has won 36 games, their RPI is 103 and they play in the 19 rated RPI conference in the nation. Not a good combination for an NCAA Regional at-large bid.
History: The last time the MAC had more than one team receive an NCAA Regional bid was in 1994.
In: Kent State (35-25, 120). Bubble: Miami-Ohio (36-20, 103). Conference RPI is 19. (1 or 2 in NCAA with my guess being 1)
16) Mid-Continent Conference:
Oral Roberts defeated Southern Utah in the tournament championship game to earn the NCAA Regional automatic bid.
In: Oral Roberts (48-9, 36). Bubble: None. Conference RPI is 26. (1 in NCAA)
17) Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference:
Bethune-Cookman won the tournament championship and automatic bid earlier in the month.
In: Bethune-Cookman (27-26, 198). Bubble: None. Conference RPI is 31. (1 in NCAA)
18) Missouri Valley Conference:
Wichita State earned the Valley's automatic qualifier with an 11-3 win over Southern Illinois in Saturday night's championship game. Creighton (35-24, 84) may be on the bubble, but I don't really think so.
In: Wichita State (47-14, 38). Bubble: None. Conference RPI is 15. (1 in NCAA)
History: Received one NCAA Regional bid each of the last three years. Prior to that, the last bid the conference earned was in 1996.
In: Nevada-Las Vegas (37-22 ,123). Bubble: San Diego State (35-29, 135). Conference RPI is 23. (1 in NCAA)
20) Northeast Conference:
Central Connecticut State won the tournament championship and the automatic bid.
In: Central Connecticut State (41-15-1, 98). Bubble: None. Conference RPI is 28. (1 in NCAA)
21) Ohio Valley Conference:
Jacksonville State defeated Southeast Missouri State to claim the 2004 Ohio Valley Conference Baseball Championship and the conference's NCAA Regional automatic bid.
In: Jacksonville State (32-26, 134). Bubble: None. Conference RPI is 22. (1 in NCAA)
In: Stanford (44-11, 15), Washington (36-18-1, 28), Arizona State (39-16, 3). Bubble: Oregon State (31-21, 63), UCLA (32-27, 49), Arizona (29-24-1, 34). Conference RPI is 3. (3, 4 or 5 in NCAA with my guess being 5)
In: Army (37-13, 106). Bubble: None. Conference RPI is 25. (1 in NCAA)
24) Southeastern Conference:
All tournament teams should go to the NCAA, so what happens in this tournament has no bearing on MSU's chances.
History: The SEC has had 8 teams in the tournament but never 9. MSU is hoping a precedent is set this season.
25) Southern Conference:
The Citadel defeated College of Charleston, eliminating them from tournament play. Then, in the second game of the day, they defeated Western Carolina to force a Sunday championship game. Pull for The Citadel today or this conference could get three teams in the NCAA Regionals, something that has never happened before.
History: Since 1987, the Southern Conference has put two teams in the NCAA Regionals twice. Look for it to happen again this year with the loss by College of Charleston.
In: College of Charleston (45-13, 47). Either Western Carolina (28-30, 147) or The Citadel (37-26, 96) will make it since they are battling for the tournament championship. Bubble: The Citadel if they don't win the tournament. Conference RPI is 14. (2 or 3 in NCAA with 2 being my guess)
26) Southland Conference:
Lamar defeated Louisiana-Monroe for the tournament championship and the league's NCAA Regional automatic berth.
In: Lamar (41-14, 40). Bubble: Texas State (32-26, 52). Conference RPI is 21. (1 or 2 in NCAA with my guess being 1)
27) Southwestern Athletic Conference:
Texas Southern won the tournament and will represent the SWAC in the NCAA Regionals.
In: Texas Southern (18-33, 250). Bubble: None. Conference RPI is 30. (1 in NCAA)
28) Sun Belt Conference:
Western Kentucky defeated Middle Tennessee to win the tournament and earn the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Regionals. Middle Tennessee, with 40 victories, will receive an at-large bid. Louisiana-Lafayette is on the bubble.
History: The past 4 years this conference has gotten 3 or 4 teams into the NCAA Regionals. However, based on past results, a team in this conference with less than 36 victories doesn't receive a bid unless they win the tournament.
In: Middle Tennessee (40-20, 56), Western Kentucky (34-26, 119). Bubble: Louisiana-Lafayette (34-23, 61). Conference RPI is 9. (2 or 3 in NCAA with my guess 2)
In: Rice (41-11, 8). Bubble: None. Conference RPI is 8. (1 in NCAA)
30) West Coast Conference:
Pepperdine defeated Loyola Marymount to win the tournament championship and earn the NCAA Regionals automatic berth. LMU is now on the bubble.
History: Since 1996, WCC has only gotten two teams in the NCAA Regionals, in 2003 and 1999. All the other years they received one bid. Plus, teams in this conference with records of 32-22, like LMU has, doesn't get invited to postseason play unless they win the conference tournament.
In: Pepperdine (28-30, 146). Bubble: Loyola Marymount (32-22-1, 83). Conference RPI is 17. (1 or 2 in NCAA with my guess being 1)
Miami-Florida (42-11, 1) is in no matter what. (1 in NCAA)
It doesn't look good for Mississippi State because, if my guesses are correct, there are 68 teams that have a better chance of getting in the NCAA Regionals than Mississippi State does. The only thing MSU can hope for is the NCAA dropping political correctness and putting in a team that plays in the toughest league in the country and is also, without a doubt, one of the best 64 teams in the country. Don't bet on it, though.
Gene Swindoll is the publisher/owner of Gene's Page, the source for Mississippi State sports on TheInsiders.com sports network. You can contact him by emailing email@example.com.