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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Drew Pomeranz is about to be drafted, and his dreams of playing professional baseball will have come true.

Round one is set for Monday night and we'll hear his name called. He played three years at Ole Miss and became one of the best ever. Some argue he was the best.

Of course he could return for a fourth season, but let's not go there. That ain't happening.

On Tuesday draft watching will be in full force as the rest of the rounds commence and several Rebels will hear their names called.

Draftable returnees are Eric Callender, David Goforth, Jake Morgan, Trent Rothlin, Matt Tracy, Miles Hamblin, Jordan King, Tim Ferguson, Matt Smith, and Cliff Vaughn.

Jake Morgan

King and Vaughn you haven't seen much of, but the rest of them you know pretty well. Jake should be back after his rehab. He's said all along he can't wait to pitch for Ole Miss again.

Matt Smith looks like one of those prime candidates to go. He's been here four years, counting a redshirt freshman season. But there seems to be an inclination he will be back.

We'll take a closer look at the draft guys this week as things pick up, as well as what's going on with the signees.

The immediate questions now are many for the Rebel team. There should be a lot of new faces in the program next season as the Rebels try to get back to where they want to be.

The Rebel hitting came around in this tournament. A lot worked offensively – long ball, small ball, base hits, doubles, triples. We saw it all, and the Rebels took advantage of things and scored enough to win many games they've played this season.

Ole Miss averaged 10 runs in 10 games back in that 10-game win streak of late April. Here, they scored 33 runs, averaged 11 per game, and won only one game of three.

Pitching. The Rebels simply didn't have enough of it. It's a point of emphasis for the incoming class, and with Pomeranz and Barrett gone, they'll need immediate help.

A healthy Jake Morgan along with what we saw (until Sunday here) from Brett Huber will play large parts on next year's pitching staff. But we'll delve more into that later.

For now the Rebs flew home Sunday night and will have their exit interviews with Bianco, like always. They'll keep up with the draft, and some will start the process of making decisions on their futures.

It should be perhaps the most interesting summer we've seen with the program in several years.

Matt Smith

Of course several seniors won't return. Kevin Mort will be tough to replace defensively. What a special two years he had at shortstop. Rory McKean and Zach Miller contributed much during their five years.

Barrett, David Phillips, and Taylor Hashman are all done at Ole Miss as far as baseball is concerned. Hashman has to be a candidate for most improved on this year's team. And now his UM career ends.

St. John's surprised all by beating Virginia 6-5 on a home run by Jeremy Baltz, who hit two two-run homers in the contest, including his late-inning two-run blast for the final margin.

Now it's anybody's Regional, although the Cavaliers should still have the upper hand having played one less game.

But Virginia, having never won a Regional at home, has to be feeling some pressure to get it done before more than 4,000 fans expected Monday night.

Virginia did an excellent job hosting a Regional. Not as well as Ole Miss does, but most of us have yet to find a place that does.

Every word here about what people said they'd either heard or experienced in Oxford last year for the Super Regional was positive. There were a lot of mutual connections, and in a lot of ways Charlottesville/UVa is a larger Oxford/Ole Miss.

But it always makes you appreciate the job Ole Miss and Oxford people do when it comes to hosting. It'll be good to be back doing that soon.

Who stays and who goes on the roster this summer will have quite a bit to do with when that happens again.


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