Friday, April 15, 2011

Showdown in Columbia: #1 Vanderbilt faces #3 South Carolina for SEC Baseball Supremacy

This is a big series. The biggest of the weekend. And it's not even close.

#1 Vanderbilt (31-3, 10-2) will take on the #3 Gamecocks of South Carolina (26-6, 10-2), the defending National Champions. The winner of the series will lead the SEC East and all but solidify themselves as a national seed in the College World Series field of 64.

Vanderbilt is riding an 11 game winning streak, and has swept their last 2 series, and their last 8 conference ball-games. As Jeff Lockridge writes in today's Tennessean, this is the Commodores "most formidable challenge to date."

Baseball America's College Baseball ace Aaron Fitt provides the definitive preview for this series in College Weekend Preview:
In the big picture, maybe there's not so much on the line this weekend in Columbia. No matter what happens, Vanderbilt and South Carolina are both likely to wind up as national seeds, which means neither will have to leave home in the postseason until Omaha.

But Southeastern Conference supremacy is its own great prize, and the team that wins this weekend will have it, at least for the time being. Certainly, regular-season weekend series do not get much more compelling than this one, which pits the nation's No. 1 team (Vanderbilt, at 31-3) against the No. 3 team (South Carolina, 26-8). The Commodores and Gamecocks are tied for the best record in the SEC (10-2), and neither has a significant weakness.
No wonder 2 of these games will be televised (tomorrow night of CSS and, and Sunday afternoon on ESPN2 and

The folks in South Carolina are focused on this series, including James Harley of the Columbia Free Times, whose article (pre-USC's Citadel loss mid-week), argued that the Gamecocks are actually being overlooked headed into this series. The State, the paper of record in the Palmetto State, also has a preview, (but you've got to sign-up, and frankly, I'm not interested).

VSL is hoping to have a preview up this afternoon, but I can't make any guarantees. There has also been discussion of a live-blog for at least 1, if not both, the nationally televised (or available via computer) games. Again, details to come. In the meantime, be sure to check out When [It] Strikes Me, and follow VUHawktalk and VandyBaseball on Twitter.

UPDATE: USC Game Notes from, as well as their preview of the action.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Do we know if anywhere around West End will show the Sunday game?