Every Tournament has a Cinderella, and the 2011 NCAA Baseball Tournament is no different. In a field of 64, three college baseball programs are arriving for the chance to make it to Omaha and the College World Series for the first time. Of course, the battle for all three will be uphill for the next few weeks, but that’s what makes the underdog route so fun to root for.
This year, the Belmont Bruins, Arkansas-Little Rock Trojans and Alcorn State Braves can all add to their athletic department accolades as they enter NCAA Baseball Tournament for the first time. UALR is the greatest Cinderella candidate of them all, as they upset Florida International in the Sun Belt Tournament to claim an automatic bid with a very unimpressive record of 24-32. Yet as FIU can attest, anything is possible against an excited team with momentum.
Belmont has perhaps the best chance to move forward through their Regional round, where double elimination is the rule, because they are staying in Nashville. After a 36-24 season, Belmont must play an incredible Vanderbilt team who has 47 wins to its credit, second most in the NCAA. It’s an epic battle of Nashville baseball that should have locals very excited.
Alcorn State won the SWAC championship several days ago against Southern to take an automatic bid at 27-28. They play against No. 8 seed Rice in the first round.