All times local
TCU at Texas
Saturday 5 p.m. (ESPNU), Sunday 2 p.m. (ESPN), Monday 12 p.m./6 p.m. (ESPN/ESPN2) if nec.
Ratings say: Texas 52.3%
The second best super from a competitive standpoint according to the ratings. Texas is favored only because of the standard homefield advantage applied to the ratings. I haven't watched TCU play this year, so someone else can hopefully chime in here. Texas comes in with the #68 offense and #6 defense while TCU brings the #16 offense and #27 defense to Austin.
Southern Miss at Florida
Saturday 3 p.m. (ESPNU), Sunday 7 p.m. (ESPN2), Monday 1 p.m./7 p.m. (ESPN/ESPN2) if nec.
Ratings say: Florida 72.4%
Southern Miss took out a perennially underachieving Georgia Tech team in their regional and their offense was on fire in the process. While they only scored 3 runs in their one loss, they scored double digits in each of their 3 wins, running up a total of 42 runs in four games. That's damn impressive if you didn't play Ohio State. Their only chance against Florida is to continue overachieving. Florida is well-balanced, owning the nation's #21 offense and #16 defense compared to Southern Miss' #56 offense and #36 defense.
Clemson at Arizona State
Saturday 6 p.m. (ESPNU), Sunday 7 p.m. (ESPN2), Monday 4 p.m. (ESPN/ESPN2) if nec.
Ratings say: Arizona State 87.5%
The first half of the clear #1/#2 duo in the nation according to the ratings takes on a Clemson team that was taken to the wire by Oklahoma State. The Sun Devils' offense-friendly home stadium disguises their team strength as ASU brings in the #1 defense to go along with their #20 offense. Clemson also relies on preventing runs (#4 defense), but their #90 offense should prove to be their undoing in Tempe. The Sun Devils gave up 10 runs in their 3 games to date while Clemson yielded just 13 in their 4 regional games.
East Carolina at North Carolina
Saturday 12 p.m. (ESPNU), Sunday 12 p.m. (ESPN2), Monday 1 p.m./7 p.m. (ESPN/ESPN2) if nec.
Ratings say: North Carolina 50.2%
This one shapes up to be a good matchup. Both teams are balanced offensively/defensively (North Carolina #24/#19, East Carolina #18/#21) and the homefield advantage essentially evens the teams up overall according to the ratings. East Carolina was pushed to the brink of elimination down 3 runs in the bottom of the ninth to the Gamecocks, but they survived against the toughest foe either of these two schools had in their regionals. Meanwhile the Tarheels cruised by a combined three game total of 31-8. North Carolina looks for their fourth consecutive trip to Omaha and hopes to avoid a west coast team as long as possible.
Louisville at Cal State Fullerton
Friday 7:30 p.m. (ESPN2), Saturday 2 p.m. (ESPN), Sunday 7 p.m. (ESPN2) if nec.
Ratings say: Fullerton 94.7%
Ouch. Knowing that it's baseball, I'd certainly put my money on the Cardinals if I could get those odds, but this matchup offers little hope for Louisville. Fullerton has the #6 offense and the #3 defense in the ratings and is only a hair behind the Sun Devils overall. Louisville brings in the #34 offense and #53 defense and a schedule that ranks outside the Top 100 compared to Fullerton's Top 5 slate. Postseason experience also clearly favors the Titans. The good news for the Cardinals is that they were the only #1 seed not favored by the ratings to get out of their own regional (they were at 31% behind Middle Tennessee State and Vanderbilt at 33% each) so they've bucked the odds before. Fullerton stormed through their 3 games 41-9 in the regional while Louisville went to the final game against Vanderbilt, outscoring their 4 opponents 20-15 on the weekend
Arkansas at Florida State
Friday 12 p.m. (ESPN), Saturday 12 p.m. (ESPN2), Sunday 12 p.m. (ESPN) if nec.
Ratings say: Florida State 54.9%
This matchup is very tight by both outcome probability as well as ranking according to the ratings. Arkansas is #14 and they travel to face the #16 Seminoles. As everyone knows, Florida State beat up on a depleted Ohio State pitching staff on Sunday, and when your pitching staff comes from the Big 10 and was only nationally average to begin with, things can get ugly. This contest offers a clash of styles as the offense-led Seminoles (#12 offense and #44 defense) are countered by the defensively strong Razorbacks (#66 offense and #11 defense). Arkansas' offense also came to life in the regional, though, scoring double digits in all three games on their way to 38 total against just 9 allowed.
Virginia at Mississippi
Friday 1 p.m. (ESPN2), Saturday 11 a.m. (ESPN2), Sunday 2 p.m. (ESPN) if nec.
Ratings say: Virginia 56.3%
Virginia is the only road team to be favored this weekend, and with good reason. The #6 team in the nation according to the EWP ratings, the Cavaliers went on the road and took out #4 UC-Irvine in a classic NCAA committee regional assignment screwjob. The matchup of Virginia's offense against Ole Miss' pitching should be a good one as the Cavaliers are #8 in the nation at scoring runs and the Rebels are #7 at preventing them. Where the series should be decided, though, is when the #13-ranked Virginia pitching and defense combination squares off against the #63 Mississippi offense. And the Virginia staff is hot, having given up only two runs, that's right - two runs, in their 27 innings at Irvine.
Rice at LSU
Friday 6 p.m. (ESPN), Saturday 4 p.m. (ESPN), Sunday 6 p.m. (ESPN2) if nec.
Ratings say: LSU 62.0%
Along with TCU at Texas, this is the other matchup of two teams that the ratings say both belong in Omaha. The #8 Owls head to Baton Rouge to take on the #5 Tigers at the new Band Alex Box Stadium. My offense/defense numbers on the Tigers are probably off as they opened a new stadium this year. I'll leave it to our cajun friends to let me know how it's playing compared to the old version, but based on the previous place's park factor, the Tigers bring in the #85 offense and #2 defense in the nation. Yes, I know, like I said it's probably off. This is based on a 1.24 park factor, so if the new stadium is playing at national average, those numbers would change to #32 offense and #5 defense (still not what you were probably expecting). The Owls also rely on preventing runs, fielding the #9 defense in the nation to go with their #40 offense.