Tallahassee Super Regional Preview, Schedule & Anonymous Coach Scouting Reports


The Tallahassee Super Regional pits Florida State against UConn. The Seminoles (45-15), in their second season under coach Link Jarrett, have made one of the biggest turnarounds of any team in the country. They went from a last-place ACC finish in 2023 at 23-31 overall and 9-21 in conference play to the No. 8 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament this year.

UConn (35-24) started the season slowly against a very challenging non-conference schedule. The Huskies got back on track in a big way in conference play, as they went 17-4 to win their fourth straight Big East title. That momentum has carried over into the NCAA Tournament and they’re now two wins away from their first CWS appearance in 45 years.

Here’s a look at the series schedule:

  • Friday, 12 p.m. ET (ESPN)
  • Saturday, 11:00 a.m. ET (ESPN)
  • Sunday, 12 p.m. (ESPN2, if necessary)


Coach: Jim Penders
Postseason history: Third super regional (first since 2022). Seeking sixth trip to the College World Series and first since 1979.
Postseason route: No. 3 seed in Norman. Went 3-1, defeating Oklahoma in regional final.

Scouting report (anonymous coach breaks down the Huskies):

“The No. 1 thing with them is their toughness. We talk about it all the time with a lot of teams, but they have a bunch of dudes from the Northeast. They’re older, they’ve been in some other schools, they’re weathered, they’re veteran. They never think they’re out of a game. They know they can beat you a bunch of ways and they’re disciplined enough to mount a comeback. Other teams might get down when they’re losing. But they’re disciplined enough to ignore the scoreboard and know that at any moment they can go off and win a game.

“They take aggressive swings so they can homer at any time. But they don’t stray from their approach. They might get beat on a couple pitches, but they’re still ready so you can’t beat them the same way every time. Korey Morton can move the ball. Luke Broadhurst is an animal. He’s a grown man in the box.

“The two guys at the top of the lineup [Caleb Shpur and Paul Tammaro] will run at will. But they won’t run themselves out of innings. They run when they need to and they can with those guys, but they can also try to win late with a home run.

“Josh MacDonald is about as good a pitching coach as there is. He’s well respected and it’s well deserved. They’re going to pound the zone with multiple pitches. They can play defense. Just as a beneficiary of being an older, tougher team, they make every play. They use six to seven guys on the mound in a weekend and they give them a chance every time. They’re not flashy, it’s not 96-97, but it’s strikes on both halves of the plate. I don’t think they strike out a ton of guys. But they make pitches.

“It’s a more even matchup than people think. They won’t be intimidated by the crowd or the lineup. They’re going to keep attacking and they can get guys off balance. That staff that Florida State can run out is an upper-level staff. But I expect UConn to keep battling.

“They’re used to being on the road, they’re used to being in an environment where they’re not favored, where the conditions are not favorable. In our league a lot of teams are like that, but UConn really has that culture, where it doesn’t matter where they’re playing or who they’re playing against. Their schedule prepared them. Coach Penders is as good as there is in the business and they weathered the storm.”

Projected Lineup

C: Matt Garbowski
1B: Maddix Dalena
2B: Bryan Padilla
3B: Luke Broadhurst
SS: Paul Tammaro
LF: Korey Morton
CF: Caleb Shpur
RF: Jacob Studley
DH: Tyler Minick
SP: Ian Cooke
SP: Stephen Quigley
SP: Garrett Coe
RP: Brady Afthim
RP: Braden Quinn

Florida State

Coach: Link Jarrett
Postseason history: 18th super regional (first since 2019). Seeking 24 trip to the College World Series and first since 2019.
Postseason route: No. 1 seed in Tallahassee. Went 3-0, defeating UCF in regional final.

Scouting report (anonymous coach breaks down the Seminoles):

“They have length in the lineup with experienced at-bats. When you think of Cam Smith, James Tibbs and Jaime Ferrer and what they’ve been able to accumulate for three years, they are the core foundation. They acquired some nice pieces around them, starting at the top with Max Williams. He’s not your patient, looking for leadoff walk guy. These guys are looking to do damage and do damage early. It’s a combination of doubles and home run power and they can impact the baseball, especially in that park.

“Smith has taken his game from freshman year to sophomore year to another level. His ability to go back side and use all fields as he did last weekend really ignited them. Tibbs, he’s Mr. Consistency; he’s a professional hitter. Marco Dinges, for me, he hasn’t done a lot, but I know he has done a lot through the season. The numbers, the threat, the potential power is there. With him, Ferrer and Daniel Cantu, those guys clean up because Tibbs and Smith—everyone is trying to be so careful with. You see the offensive numbers from them, it’s a lot of RBI, it’s a lot of potential opportunities to drive runs in there.

“Alex Lodise and Drew Faurot are like switchblades. They can drag and slash, but they also have the ability to impact the baseball. They rotate their catchers, they’re situational guys. The one common thing when you think about Florida State and UNC and Virginia and the top teams in our conference is the length of the lineup.

“It’s not the biggest question mark, but if there’s a chink [in the armor], it’s on the mound. There was enough firepower to start the season, but they had to make do and work around Cam Leiter not being available and Conner Whittaker being out half the year. Jamie Arnold is as good as it gets. One of the first two games you’re matching up with next year’s version of Hagen Smith or Chase Burns. It’s a unique combination of angle and power stuff. He fills up the strike zone, that’s the crazy part. He’s attacking the zone.

“If they can get length out of Carson Dorsey knowing what Arnold can do, that’s the best scenario. They have pieces in the bullpen that can hold the game, finish the game but there’s not a lot of depth there. Brennan Oxford’s been good for them, Joe Charles has had his moments, Connor Hults has had his moments. If you have to use Whittaker as an opener/starter in game three, they’re not getting the opportunity to use him in the role you want.

“You can argue without some of the key injuries they were on pace to be a No. 1, 2 or 3 seed overall. If Leiter stays healthy, if Gavin Adams isn’t hurt before the year, if Whittaker doesn’t miss time. It’s a combination of the foundation offensively, but also the pieces that were acquired over the last year.

How to attack Arnold. “Gosh, as tough as it is you have to pick one side of the plate or the other. It’s more two pitches than three, but the fastball has ride to it and the ability to run away from righthanders at times. He’s done a good job of manipulating run or staying true to ride through the zone. He’s shown the ability to attack the strike zone, so it’s not like you can play the patient game. He’s attacking the zone; you saw that last weekend when he had an immaculate inning. You’ve got to pick one side or the other and say, ‘Let’s get it early.’

“Link Jarrett is one of the best defensive coaches in the country. You’ve seen it everywhere he’s been. They’re athletic on the field. Smith ranges to both sides, Cantu is phenomenal at first. Faurot and Lodise are lanky. They don’t beat themselves. There’s firepower in the pitching and you see it with the strikeout numbers, but the plays the defense makes make the pitching that much better.

“I’ve had people over the years tell me you’re automatically down 2-0 in Tallahassee. Their players are used to playing in that environment. There’s something about that environment, that atmosphere that if you haven’t been in it before it’s different. Their comfortability playing at home and the noon games, the heat, it’s going to challenge for teams to come in and play well there.”

Projected Lineup

C: Jaxson West
1B: Daniel Cantu
2B: Drew Faurot
3B: Cam Smith
SS: Alex Lodise
LF: Jaime Ferrer
CF: Max Williams
RF: James Tibbs III
DH: Marco Dinges
SP: Jamie Arnold
SP: Carson Dorsey
SP: Conner Whittaker
RP: Joe Charles
RP: Brennan Oxford

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