2022 NCAA Baseball Tournament Projected Field Of 64 (4/27/22)
With Selection Monday about a month away, the postseason picture is beginning to firm up, especially at the back of the field. The next few weeks are critical for postseason hopes and every team in the country will be looking to make a strong final push in May.
While the postseason picture is becoming ever clearer, the emphasis here remains on “projected.” This is not meant to be how the tournament would be seeded if it started tomorrow, it is meant to illustrate what it might be expected to look like on Selection Monday.
The host race remains contentious, however. There are two new teams on the host line this week: Texas Christian and Vanderbilt. Both have flaws to their hosting resumes as constructed now, but the next month should help them firm up their cases.
TCU is facing an RPI problem, as it ranks No. 27 in the metric. But it is in the driver’s seat of the Big 12 race and if it is able to clinch the title down the stretch, that would be a big feather in its cap. It also has a chance to help its RPI this weekend, as it faces a top 25 team in Florida State on the road.
Vanderbilt has no such RPI issues. The Commodores rank seventh and would be an easy choice to host except that they are 9-9 in SEC play. With 12 SEC games to play, they need to go at least 7-5 down the stretch or make a deep run in the SEC Tournament. With Texas A&M, Georgia, Arkansas and Louisiana State on its remaining slate it won’t be easy for Vanderbilt. But it will have earned a hosting spot if it gets those seven wins.
The SEC has several other teams in the mix to host. Texas A&M, Vanderbilt’s opponent this weekend, is firmly in the hosting mix after last weekend beating Arkansas. The Aggies’ RPI is up to No. 18 and they’re closing strong. Auburn also is strongly in the mix with an RPI of 14, but it faces a very challenging next two weeks with Tennessee and Arkansas. If the Tigers can get through that with a few wins, they’ll be a lock to host. LSU also could play its way to the host line.
Notably missing as a host in this projection is Wofford, which now boasts a top-10 RPI after winning a series at Mercer and taking control of the Southern Conference race. The Terriers have never hosted before and will have very little margin for error down the stretch as they have just one game remaining against a team that ranks in the top 150 of RPI.
Just holding on to hosting status in this projection are Dallas Baptist and Oklahoma State. DBU has now lost back-to-back Missouri Valley Conference series and clearly will not run away with the title. But it remains No. 2 in RPI, and it clearly is going to hold a lofty RPI all season long. Winning an MVC crown—regular season or tournament—is probably a prerequisite to hosting for the Patriots and in this projection, they do so. Oklahoma State, meanwhile, ranks No. 29 in RPI but still controls its own destiny in the Big 12 title race. The Cowboys are walking a fine line. They cannot see their RPI slip further, but for now still project as hosts.
The ACC leads all conferences with 10 bids in this projection, one ahead of the SEC. Nearly every team in the conference is still alive in the fight for regionals and the final few weeks will be critical for all teams jockeying for position, both in regionals and as hosts.
Baseball America will continue to update the projected field weekly throughout the spring.
|PROJECTED FIELD OF 64|
|1. (1) Tennessee*^||1. (16) Dallas Baptist*^|
|2. Liberty*||2. Texas A&M|
|3. Rutgers||3. Texas Tech|
|4. Alabama State*||4. Pennsylvania*|
|Corvallis, Ore.||Stillwater, Okla.|
|1. (2) Oregon State*^||1. (15) Oklahoma State^|
|2. UC Santa Barbara*||2. Auburn|
|3. Oklahoma||3. Wake Forest|
|4. Army*||4. Campbell*|
|Coral Gables, Fla.||Nashville|
|1. (3) Miami*^||1. (14) Vanderbilt^|
|2. Grand Canyon*||2. Louisville|
|3. Florida||3. Mercer|
|4. Long Island*||4. Belmont*|
|1. (4) Stanford^||1. (13) Texas^|
|2. North Carolina State||2. Louisiana State|
|3. San Diego||3. Texas State|
|4. Maine*||4. Central Michigan*|
|South Bend, Ind.||Spokane, Wash.|
|1. (5) Notre Dame^||1. (12) Gonzaga*^|
|2. UCLA||2. Oregon|
|3. Iowa||3. Pittsburgh|
|4. Wright State*||4. North Dakota State*|
|Athens, Ga.||Statesboro, Ga.|
|1. (6) Georgia^||1. (11) Georgia Southern*^|
|2. Wofford*||2. Florida State|
|3. Kennesaw State||3. Alabama|
|4. Davidson*||4. College of Charleston*|
|Hattiesburg, Miss.||Fayetteville, Ark.|
|1. (7) Southern Mississippi*^||1. (10) Arkansas^|
|2. Georgia Tech||2. Virginia Tech|
|3. Tulane||3. East Carolina*|
|4. McNeese State*||4. Nevada-Las Vegas*|
|Charlottesville, Va.||Fort Worth, Texas|
|1. (8) Virginia^||1. (9) TCU*^|
|2. Maryland*||2. Arizona|
|3. West Virginia||3. Connecticut*|
|4. Coppin State*||4. Fairfield*|
* denotes automatic bid
^ denotes regional host
Ole Miss, Mississippi State Must Buck History After 0-6 SEC Starts
After getting swept in each of their first two SEC series, Ole Miss and Mississippi State must dig out of a deep hole with little historical precedent to reach the NCAA Tournament.
Last Four In
First Four Out
66. North Carolina
67. Mississippi State
68. Middle Tennessee State
Next Four Out
70. Southeast Missouri State
71. Louisiana Tech
72. UC Irvine