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College Top 25

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TCU's Charles King (Photo by Bill Mitchell)

After going 2-1 at the MLB4 Tournament at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick, Ariz., Vanderbilt remains No. 1 in the Baseball America Top 25.

The Commodores emphatically defeated Virginia and Cal State Fullerton on the first two days of the tournament before falling to Texas Christian in the finale. The Commodores came into this season ranked No. 1 in the Preseason Top 25 for the second time in program history.

The top 10 this week remains unchanged after all 10 teams produced winning weekends. In all, they combined to go 29-2.

The lone new team in this week’s Top 25 is TCU, which joins at No. 24. The Horned Frogs went 2-1 at the MLB4 Tournament, beating Virginia and Vanderbilt.

Minnesota falls out of the Top 25 after going 1-2 at the Sanderson Ford College Baseball Classic in Surprise, Ariz.

The staff of Baseball America determines the Top 25 rankings. Records indicated are through Feb. 17.

Updated on: 2/18/2019
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    Vanderbilt

    SEC
    Notes:

    Last week: 2-1
    Overall: 2-1, 0-0 in SEC (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend Series: 0-0


    Results: MLB4 Tournament in Scottsdale, Ariz.
    Feb. 15: vs. Virginia: W 15-9
    Feb. 16: vs. Cal State Fullerton: W 14-9
    Feb. 17: vs. Texas Christian: L 10-2
    Upcoming
    Feb. 20: vs. Evansville
    Feb. 22-24: vs. Pepperdine

    Vanderbilt didn’t get the pitching that you might have anticipated coming into the weekend, but in the first two games, the offense more than did its part to make up for it. Against Virginia on Friday, six different Commodores had a multi-hit day, and on Saturday, six more accomplished the feat. The loss on Sunday was a sour note on which to end the weekend, but given the high level of competition, a 2-1 weekend at Talking Stick is a fine showing.

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    Louisiana State

    SEC
    Notes:

    Last week: 3-0
    Overall: 3-0, 0-0 in SEC (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend Series: 0-0


    Results: LSU Tournament in Baton Rouge
    Feb. 15: Louisiana-Monroe: W 12-7
    Feb. 16: Army: W 6-5
    Feb. 17: Air Force: W 17-5
    Upcoming
    Feb. 19: vs. Southeastern Louisiana
    Feb. 20: @ Northwestern St.
    Feb. 22-24: vs. Bryant

    LSU got a lot out of their 3-0 weekend in their home tournament down in Baton Rouge. Most notably, they came out of it unscathed, but they also showed resilience in making comebacks against both Louisiana-Monroe and Army, and they got big days from some of their brightest stars. Antoine Duplantis drove in six against ULM, including a grand slam in the eighth inning that set off pandemonium in Alex Box Stadium. Freshman phenom Landon Marceaux had a solid showing in game two, giving up just one run in 5.2 innings, and they blew out Air Force on Sunday behind a 4-for-4 day from Josh Smith.

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    UCLA

    Pac-12
    Notes:

    Last week: 3-0
    Overall: 3-0, 0-0 in Pac-12 (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend Series: 1-0


    Results:
    February 15-17: St. John’s; W 3-2, W 9-0, W 11-1
    Upcoming
    Feb. 19: Loyola Marymount
    Feb. 22-24: @ Georgia Tech

    UCLA took St. John’s best shot on Friday, when they were forced to make a late rally to overcome a 2-0 deficit, but cruised in the last two games of the series by a combined 20-1 score. Righthander Ryan Garcia, slated to be the Bruins’ Friday starter missed the series due to injury, but they were able to overcome that against the Red Storm with quality starts from righthanders Zach Pettway, Jack Ralston and Jesse Bergin. They’ll have another tough test this weekend on the road against Georgia Tech.

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    Florida

    SEC
    Notes:

    Last week: 3-0
    Overall: 3-0, 0-0 in SEC (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend Series: 1-0


    Results:
    Feb. 15-17: Long Beach State W 8-2, W 5-2, W 3-1
    Upcoming
    Feb. 19: @ South Florida
    Feb. 22-24: Miami

    In news that shouldn’t surprise anyone, Florida pitched incredibly well in its sweep of Long Beach State, giving up just five runs on 17 hits in the three games. Offensively, it was a big weekend for sophomore shortstop Brady McConnell, who was the only Gators’ hitter to have a two-hit day twice over the weekend. The 3-1 victory on Sunday afternoon was the 500th of coach Kevin O’Sullivan’s career.

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    North Carolina

    ACC
    Notes:

    Last week: 3-0
    Overall: 3-0, 0-0 in ACC (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend Series: 1-0


    Results:
    Feb. 15-17: Xavier: W 12-3, W 8-3, W 14-3
    Upcoming
    Feb. 19: North Carolina A&T
    Feb. 20: Virginia Commonwealth
    Feb. 22-24: South Florida

    North Carolina took a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the first of their series-opening game against Xavier and never looked back on the way to emphatically sweeping the Musketeers. In that opener, the Tar Heels did an outstanding job of knocking around Xavier ace and hard-throwing righthander Connor Grammes to the tune of six hits and six runs in 3.2 innings. They will get a tougher test this coming weekend against a talented South Florida team.

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    Florida State

    ACC
    Notes:

    Last week: 4-0
    Overall: 4-0, 0-0 in ACC (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend Series: 1-0


    Results:
    Feb. 15-17: Maine: W 11-0, W 16-3, W 6-5 (7), W 9-1
    Upcoming
    Feb. 19: @ Jacksonville
    Feb. 22-24: Youngstown State

    The Seminoles started coach Mike Martin’s final season at the helm in style, with the program’s 10th no-hitter, a combined effort between Drew Parrish, Conor Grady and Chase Haney. Outside of being pushed in Game 3 of series, the Seminoles took care of business at home, as they so often do early in the season.

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    Stanford

    Pac-12
    Notes:

    Last week: 3-0
    Overall: 3-0, 0-0 in Pac-12 (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend Series: 0-0


    Results:
    Angels College Classic in Tempe, Ariz.
    Feb. 15: vs. Ball State: W 2-1
    Feb. 16: vs. Wichita State: W 5-4
    Feb. 17: vs. Pepperdine: W 6-1
    Upcoming
    Feb. 18: @ Grand Canyon
    Feb. 22-24: vs. Nevada-Las Vegas

    Stanford started the weekend by ending up on the right side of an outstanding pitchers duel between righthander Brendan Beck and Ball State’s Drey Jamison. The former threw 6.1 innings, giving up four hits and one run with no walks and 11 strikeouts. The Cardinal offense might not have fully engaged in their three games, but with the talent they have in the lineup, you have to expect it will sooner rather than later.

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    Texas Tech

    Big 12
    Notes:

    Last week: 2-1
    Overall: 2-1, 0-0 in Big 12 (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend Series: 1-0


    Results:
    Feb. 15-17: Oregon: L 9-4, W 12-11, W 6-4
    Upcoming
    Feb. 18: Oregon
    Feb. 22-24: Kentucky

    What a strange weekend it was for Texas Tech, as they got blitzed by the Oregon offense in Game 1, were forced to come back from an 8-0 first-inning deficit to win Game 2, and then came back from 4-2 down to win Game 3. What looked like it might be a disastrous weekend for the Red Raiders after 10 innings of play turned into a pretty good one, although the series finale on Monday will likely have large bearing on how Tech feels about the series.

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    Mississippi State

    SEC
    Notes:

    Last week: 3-0
    Overall: 3-0
    Weekend series: 1-0


    Results:
    Feb. 15-16: Youngstown State: W 14-3, W 14-2, W 8-0
    Upcoming
    Feb. 20: Alabama-Birmingham
    Feb. 22-24: (21) Southern Mississippi

    After trailing 3-0 going into the bottom of the sixth inning of the series opener against Youngstown State, Mississippi State outscored the Penguins 36-2 the rest of the way to score a commanding sweep. Highly-touted freshman JT Ginn enjoyed a solid debut in his start in game two, giving up two hits and two runs with one walk and seven strikeouts in five innings of work. First baseman Tanner Allen had a huge weekend, going 7-for-13 with three doubles, two home runs, and 13 RBI.

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    Oregon State

    Pac-12
    Notes:

    Last week: 3-0
    Overall: 3-0, 0-0 in Pac-12 (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend series: 0-0


    Results: Sanderson Ford College Baseball Classic in Surprise, Ariz.
    Feb. 15: vs. New Mexico W 6-5
    Feb. 16 vs. Gonzaga: W 9-2
    Feb. 17: vs. (24) Minnesota: W 13-1
    Upcoming
    Feb. 18: vs. New Mexico
    Feb. 21-24: vs. Nebraska

    The defending national champs got a bit of a scare from New Mexico to start the weekend when the Lobos were able to get to Kevin Abel, but they clawed their way to victory in that game and then made an emphatic statement in big wins over Gonzaga and Minnesota to wrap up. Catcher Adley Rutschman picked up where he left off last season, hitting home runs in each of the last two games of the weekend, and Bryce Fehmel starred, giving up just one hit and one run in eight innings of work against the Zags.

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    East Carolina

    AAC
    Notes:

    Last week: 3-0
    Overall: 3-0, 0-0 in AAC (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend series: 1-0


    Results:
    Feb. 15-17: Radford: W 6-2, W 15-9, W 4-3
    Upcoming
    Feb. 20: @ Campbell
    Feb. 22-24: Monmouth

    East Carolina got a tough test from a competitive Radford team at different points throughout the weekend, particularly in Sunday’s game, when they fell behind the Highlanders 3-0 early, but ultimately came out with a hard-fought sweep. Alec Burleson did a little bit of everything for the Pirates over the weekend. He started Friday’s game on the mound, giving up three hits and two runs in five innings. He also went 4-for-5 as the team’s DH in the game. On Saturday, he got a hit in his only at-bat, all the while playing both right field and first base, and on Sunday, he was in the leadoff spot as the DH, going 1-for-4.

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    Louisville

    ACC
    Notes:

    Last week: 1-2
    Overall 1-2, 0-0 in ACC (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend series: 0-1


    Results:
    Feb. 15-17: vs. Connecticut in Lakeland, Fla.: L 3-2, W 12-2, L 8-3
    Upcoming
    Feb. 20: Eastern Kentucky
    Feb. 22-24: Brown

    Connecticut made a statement at the expense of Louisville in its series down in Lakeland. The Cardinals’ highlight, a 12-2 win in the middle game, included outstanding starting pitching from Nick Bennett and home runs from Tyler Fitzgerald, Zach Britton and Lucas Dunn. This series loss might sting, given that you always want to start your season off on the right foot, but UConn is a projected regional team that typically does well in the metrics. The single neutral-site win in this series could potentially be as beneficial come Selection Monday as the two losses are detrimental.

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    Mississippi

    SEC
    Notes:

    Last week: 1-1
    Overall: 1-1, 0-0 in SEC (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend series: 0-0-1


    Results:
    Feb. 15-16: Wright State: W 10-1, L 9-5
    Upcoming
    Feb. 19: Arkansas State
    Feb. 22-24: @ Tulane

    In the series-opening win, the Rebels showed what they’re capable of when operating at near-full capacity. Five of the team’s 11 hits went for extra bases, including homers for Tyler Keenan and Cooper Johnson, and Will Ethridge threw 5.2 shutout innings. They are undoubtedly disappointed to not have played the third game in this series due to weather, as a season-opening series win over a quality Wright State team would have been a feather in their cap.

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    Clemson

    ACC
    Notes:

    Previous ranking: 2-1
    Overall: 2-1, 0-0 in ACC (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend series 1-0


    Results
    Feb. 15-16: vs. South Alabama: W 6-2, W 7-2, L 4-3
    Upcoming
    Feb. 19: Charlotte
    Feb. 20: Tennessee Tech
    Feb. 22-24: Virginia Military Institute

    Without the services of Seth Beer and Chris Williams, the Clemson offense will likely be less power-oriented in 2019, but that wasn’t the case in their series win over USA. They got two homers in each victory, including a three-run shot by shortstop Logan Davidson in Game 1 that turned a 2-0 deficit into a 3-2 lead. Freshman righthander Davis Sharpe was a hero in the Game 1 win, throwing five shutout innings with eight strikeouts.

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    Georgia

    SEC
    Notes:

    Last week: 3-0
    Overall: 3-0, 0-0 in SEC (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend series: 1-0


    Results:
    Feb. 15-16: vs. Dayton: W 5-1, W 10-7, W 13-1
    Upcoming
    Feb. 19: @ Kennesaw State
    Feb. 22-24: Massachusetts-Lowell

    Georgia got quality starting pitching from start to finish in their series sweep over Dayton. Righthander Emerson Hancock got things started with 6.2 shutout innings on Friday, giving up just two hits and one walk along the way. In the first half of a Saturday doubleheader, righthhander Will Proctor struck out nine hitters and gave up just two earned runs in five innings of work, and in the latter half of the double-dip, righthander Tony Locey gave up three hits and one run with 10 strikeouts in six innings. A few runs given up after the game was in hand made the middle game of the series appear a bit closer than it really was, and all told, the Bulldogs handled this series like a top-15 program should.

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    Baylor

    Big 12
    Notes:

    Last week: 4-0
    Overall: 4-0, 0-0 in Big 12 (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend series: 1-0


    Results:
    Feb. 15-17: Holy Cross W 12-0, W 8-5, W 8-5, W 6-1
    Upcoming
    Feb. 19: @ Texas State
    Feb. 22-24: Cornell

    Baylor was pushed by Holy Cross in games two and three of this series, but any four-game sweep, no matter how you arrive there, is a fantastic start to a season. Offensive depth is perhaps Baylor’s greatest strength and that showed this weekend, as the star of the game was different in each win. Dampening the weekend, however, was news that Preseason All-American catcher Shea Langeliers will be sidelined for the next few weeks by a broken hamate bone.

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    Arkansas

    SEC
    Notes:

    Last week: 3-0
    Overall: 3-0, 0-0 in SEC (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend series: 1-0


    Results:
    February 16-17: Eastern Illinois: W 15-7, W 12-3, W 3-2
    Upcoming
    Feb. 21-23: @ Southern California

    Arkansas flexed its offensive muscle in its sweep of Eastern Illinois, plating 30 runs in the three games, with star shortstop Casey Martin going 6-for-14 in the series. After two routine wins to begin the weekend, the Hogs were pushed in the third game of the series before walking it off on a Heston Kjerstad RBI single. They’ll likely be tested a little more next weekend, when they hit the road to take on USC.

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    Auburn

    SEC
    Notes:

    Last week: 2-1
    Overall: 2-1, 0-0 in SEC (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend series: 1-0


    Results:
    Feb. 15-17: Georgia Southern W 11-2, L 7-5 (13), W 4-3 (13)
    Upcoming
    Feb. 19-20: Alabama A&M
    Feb. 22-24: @ Central Florida

    In a perfect example of how razor-thin margins can be, Auburn was just a couple of plays away from sweeping this series. Of course, the other side of that same coin is that they were just a couple of plays away from losing the series. Georgia Southern has the potential to compete near the top of the Sun Belt Conference this season, so come May, this may end up being a sneaky-good series win for Auburn to have. Their upcoming series on the road against UCF is another such opportunity.

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    Texas

    Big 12
    Notes:

    Last week: 2-1
    Overall: 2-1, 0-0 in Big 12 (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend series: 1-0


    Results:
    Feb. 15-17: @ Louisiana-Lafayette W 3-1, W 6-5, L 8-6
    Upcoming
    Feb. 19: @ Rice
    Feb. 22-24: Purdue

    The Longhorns battled raucous crowds at Russo Park, a returning lefthander Gunner Leger and the rest of a quality Ragin’ Cajuns team over the weekend and came away with a hard-fought series win. Righthander Bryce Elder wasn’t necessarily part of the weekend rotation plans coming out of the fall, but he earned his way in during spring practice, and Texas is glad he did. He outdueled Leger in Game 1 of the series, throwing eight innings of four-hit, one-run baseball with nine strikeouts.

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    Michigan

    Big 10
    Notes:

    Last week: 3-0
    Overall: 3-0, 0-0 in Big Ten (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend series 1-0


    Results:
    Feb. 15-17: vs. Binghamton in Port St. Lucie, Fla.: W 10-0, W 5-4, W 12-2
    Upcoming
    Feb. 22-24: @ The Citadel

    In the wild, the wolverine isn’t a natural predator of the bearcat, but it played out that way on the baseball field last weekend as the Michigan Wolverines swept the Binghamton Bearcats in a series played in the warmer climes of Florida. In the first two games of the series, starting pitchers Tommy Henry and Karl Kauffman combined to strike out 19 and allow just one run in 14 innings. With lefthander Ben Dragani out for the season due to injury, that pair will need to continue to come up big.

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    Southern Mississippi

    Conference USA
    Notes:

    Last week: 3-0
    Overall 3-0, 0-0 in C-USA (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend series: 1-0


    Results
    Feb. 15-17: Purdue: W 7-6 (10), W 4-2, W 16-7
    Upcoming
    Feb. 20: Troy
    Feb. 22-24: @ Mississippi State

    Outfielder/righthander Matt Wallner might have been held out of the starting rotation due to a forearm strain, but it clearly wasn’t bothering him at the plate. He had a hit in all three games, and on Sunday, he had two hits, two walks, a home run and five RBI. A road series for USM next weekend against Mississippi State, which they swept at home to begin last season, will be a fun one for both the competition and the atmosphere at the new Dudy Noble Field.

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    Duke

    ACC
    Notes:

    Last week: 3-0
    Overall: 3-0, 0-0 in ACC (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend series: 1-0


    Results:
    February 15-17: Lehigh: W 7-0, W 8-1, W 4-3
    Upcoming
    Feb. 19: @ Davidson
    Feb. 22-24: Northwestern

    Duke’s pitching dominated the weekend, as they didn’t allow an earned run until the third inning of game three of the series. Lefthander Graeme Stinson certainly shined in his abbreviated start on Friday, throwing three shutout innings with six strikeouts. This series sweep is Duke’s first season-opening sweep since the 2008 season, when they won four games against Iona on the way to beginning the season 11-0.

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    Coastal Carolina

    Sun Belt
    Notes:

    Last week: 3-0
    Overall: 3-0, 0-0 in Sun Belt (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend series 0-0


    Results: Brittain Resorts Invitational in Conway, S.C.
    Feb. 15: Virginia Commonwealth W 10-8
    Feb. 16: Maryland: W 7-2
    Feb. 17: Campbell: W 11-2
    Upcoming
    Feb. 19: @ UNC Wilmington
    Brittain Resorts Invitational in Conway, S.C.
    Feb. 22: Michigan State
    Feb. 23: Kent State
    Feb. 24: North Carolina State

    The Chanticleers started off their usual early-season slate of home tournaments with a quality showing. Lefthander Anthony Veneziano gave the pitching performance of the weekend, throwing five shutout innings with six strikeouts in the win over Maryland. The level of competition ramps up next weekend, when they take on a Michigan State team with some high-end arms and two perennial regional teams in Kent State and NC State.

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    Texas Christian

    Big 12
    Notes:

    Last week: 2-1
    Overall: 2-1, 0-0 in Big 12 (1-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend series: 0-0
    Results
    MLB4 Tournament in Scottsdale, Ariz.
    Feb. 15: vs. Cal State Fullerton: L 2-0
    Feb. 16: vs. Virginia: W 9-4
    Feb. 17: vs. (1) Vanderbilt: W 10-2
    Upcoming
    Feb. 19: vs. Abilene Christian
    Feb. 22-24: vs. Grand Canyon

    TCU made a huge statement last weekend, as a 2-1 showing against top-flight competition down in Arizona is a result likely to hold up as a positive on their postseason resume come May. With offense being such a concern a year ago, it has to be seen a big step forward that the Horned Frogs rebounded from being shut out on opening day to score 19 combined runs in their two wins.

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    UC Irvine

    Big West
    Notes:

    Last week: 2-1
    Overall: 2-1, 0-0 in Big West (0-0 vs. Top 25)
    Weekend series: 1-0


    Results February 16-17: Washington: L 9-5, W 2-1, W 6-4
    Upcoming
    Feb. 19: @ San Diego State
    Feb. 22-24: @ Rice

    The Anteaters challenged themselves right out of the gate this season with a series against Washington, and it paid off, as they scored a series win that could pay big dividends as they push for a postseason bid. The star on the mound this weekend wasn’t Andre Pallante, as you may have predicted, but Tanner Brubaker, who gave up three hits and one run with six strikeouts in 5.2 innings. The early-season gauntlet continues this coming week, as they hit the road for a quality midweek game against San Diego State before heading down to Houston to take on Rice.

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