Full Version: Seminoles want to play host
You're currently viewing a stripped down version of our content. View the full version with proper formatting.
Quote:Seminoles want to play host
FSU seeking strong finish to bring NCAA regional to town
By Steve Ellis

Four teams are ahead of Florida State in the ACC. Two state rivals - Miami and Florida - are considered a lock to host NCAA regionals. The Seminoles' unofficial RPI of .561 ranks 44th among DivisionI teams. And, beginning with tonight's Maryland series opener, FSU has 12 remaining regular-season games and the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament to improve its stock.

If the numbers don't seem to stack in FSU's favor as it positions itself for a postseason at home, try this - 1998. In that year, FSU, Miami and Florida each hosted a regional.

"We've done that before," said Charlie Carr, FSU's senior associate athletic director, who also chairs the NCAA DivisionI Baseball Committee. "You never look at it as a conference - (or as) a state.  Conference (parameters aren't) a consideration. We got beat to death for taking nine SEC teams. If they are the most deserving teams, than that's what we'll end up doing.

"There is a geographic balance you would like to have, but we try to reward those who win and those who succeed. (FSU) has got to keep winning. That was a good win for (FSU over Florida). There is a lot of baseball left, and that is really going to be the telling tale."

That is exactly the message that coach Mike Martin has delivered to a team that will again have a different look to its weekend rotation.  Bryan Henry will start tonight, followed by Barret Browning and Mark Sauls on Saturday and Sunday, respectively. Martin has his sights on not only hosting a regional in early June but also being named a top seed for one of those 16 regionals. The top eight national seeds are nearly assured of hosting a super regional if they make it through the regionals.

The host sites, 64-team field and the top eight seeding will be announced May30. The super regional sites will be announced the following Sunday. Two of FSU's final three ACC opponents - North Carolina and North Carolina State - have better unofficial RPI ratings than that of FSU. North Carolina is seventh according to Boyd's World and N.C. State 11th.

Carr noted that the ACC tournament can improve a team's position as it did for FSU a year ago.

"This is not over by any stretch," Martin said. "We can still host a regional. ... Absolutely."

The last time FSU did not host a regional was in 1996. That year, FSU traveled to Stanford. Martin won't publicly say FSU needs to win its remaining series to assure a host site. But Baseball America's John Manuel thinks that is a must for the Seminoles if they are to host a regional.

"I think that it is reasonable to ask them to go 6-3," Manuel said. "I don't think they have a chance at being a (a top-eight seed). I think (hosting) is very realistic."

Manuel noted it's not just FSU's finish that will determine the scenario. Manuel thinks that one scenario that might affect FSU would be if the Baseball Committee were to offer host sites to two Northern schools in addition to Nebraska. Manuel said that would make it difficult to have three regional sites in the state of Florida.
Reference URL's