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Falling Short

John Manuel -Premium Content

This wasn't a particularly pretty year for Baseball America's preseason Top 25, with three of our top four teams in the preseason—UCLA, Arizona and Mississippi—falling out of the rankings completely by April. Let's take a look at where we—and more importantly five of these teams—went wrong.

College | #2008#Column

UnACCeptable

John Manuel -Premium Content

The Atlantic Coast Conference ain't what it used to be. The league expanded this decade in two stages, from a nine-team league to a 12-team super-conference. Football drove the expansion, of course, as Boston College, Miami and Virginia Tech joined the league. Since then, Wake Forest—one of the smallest Division I football programs in the country—has played in the Bowl Championship Series, while Miami and Florida State (added in 1992) have slipped from national powers to mediocrity.

College | #2008#Column

Three To Watch

John Manuel -Premium Content

In honor of former BA columnist Keith Olbermann's "Countdown" show on MSNBC, here are the three stories from the first half of the college season that bear watching in the second half. Sorry, the NCAA already has wrapped up this year's "Worst Person in the World" award.

College | #2008#Column

Polk’s Softer Side

John Manuel -Premium Content

Ron Polk's career was so rich, it took two John Manuel columns to encapsulate it. This one focuses on Polk's career that has little to do with the NCAA—in other words, the part Polk won't talk about.

College | #2008#Column

Sidewinding Approach Suits Glafenhein Fine

John Manuel -Premium Content

East Tennessee State senior Caleb Glafenhein, though, redefines value this season. As college baseball reached its midway point in April, his Buccaneers team had played 32 of its 56 regular-season games, and Glafenhein had appeared in 18 of them. He's made seven starts, more than all but one of his teammates. He's made 11 relief appearances as well—third on the team.

College | #2007#Column