One week from today, we will have a full 64-team NCAA Tournament bracket. We've almost made it.
In less than 24 hours, we'll have the ACC and SEC Tournaments underway, as well as plenty of other leagues deciding their automatic qualifiers in the coming days, as well. It's officially postseason time, baby. Here are the top stories from this past week as we get ready for the Road to Omaha.
Nebraska Wins Big Ten Title
The Big Ten is one of the conferences which opted not to have a tournament this year, so Nebraska officially clinched the league title and automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament after four wins over Ohio State and Indiana this weekend. The four-game sweep and conference title vaulted the Huskers back into the Top 25 at No. 20 ahead of their final series of the season against Michigan.
The Huskers are currently the highest-ranked team in the Big Ten and they're certainly not a team you want to see as a 2-seed in a regional. They could make some noise in this NCAA Tournament.
Arizona Clinches Pac-12, Stanford Takes Huge Series From Oregon
On the West Coast, Arizona clinched the Pac-12 title — another league which is not playing a conference tournament — and Stanford outlasted Oregon in a 12-inning thriller of a rubber game to take the series from Oregon. After such a disappointing season from UCLA, those three teams have put up great seasons to make sure the Pac-12 is represented in the national conversation.
All three of those teams are now ranked inside the Top 10 and will almost assuredly be hosting regionals.
SEC Tournament Field Set
The field is set for the SEC Tournament in Hoover, Alabama, where things will get started Tuesday morning. Arkansas clinched the overall league regular season title after finishing 22-8 in conference play on the season. Tennessee won its series at South Carolina to win the Eastern division and take the No. 2 seed in the conference tournament, edging out Vanderbilt for the Vols' first division title since 1997.
I would not be shocked at all to see any of those top six seeds win this tournament, so it should be a fun week in Hoover. We could see some Omaha previews between some of these programs, as well.
Player of the Week: Cody Littlejohn, Tennessee Tech
All-Name First Teamer Cody Littlejohn went bananas for Tennessee Tech last week, including a three-homer game against SIU Edwardsville. Also, he's mostly here for his elite name.
Play of the Week: Andrew Bacon, Northern Kentucky
NKU's Andrew Bacon made one of the catches of the year against Illinois-Chicago, when he scaled the wall in foul territory like damn Spider-Man and somehow came back down to the ground with the baseball. I don't know exactly what event, but we need this guy in the Olympic qualifiers for something.
Uniform of the Week: Southern
Southern University was wearing its sick baby blue uniform when it took down Jackson State — who had not lost a conference game all season — to win the SWAC title and book a trip to the NCAA Tournament. The Jags earn Dogpile of the Week honors, as well.
College Baseball Moment of the Week: "Fuck Yeah!" Guy
Turn your sound up — unless you're at work — and enjoy the excitement of a guy who definitely loves college baseball more than you. When Tennessee won its rubber game at South Carolina to finish the season undefeated in SEC road series, some Vol fan in the crowd was pretty obviously fired up about it. I love that guy.
Get ready, y'all. The countdown to Selection Monday is on. Enjoy Championship Week.