After a less-than-stellar Big Ten Tournament in which they had little to gain and apparently nothing to lose, the Indiana Hoosiers have received an at-large berth in the NCAA Baseball Tournament. Chris Lemonis’s team will seeded second deep into the heart of Texas as they head to the Austin regional at the University of Texas’s Disch-Falk Field.
Indiana may have gotten a break when it comes to their regional host. Of all 16 teams hosting a regional, the Texas Longhorns are the worst in RPI ranking (22nd, just seven spots higher than Indiana) and presumably were given the benefit of the doubt for winning the regular season title in the nation’s second-best RPI conference. However, the Hoosiers will have their hands full on Friday in the opener when they face Texas A&M, the highest team in the RPI (15th) not to host a regional.
Rounding out the regional is Texas Southern (217th in RPI), which finished just one game above .500 and claimed the SWAC’s automatic bid.
The winner of the Austin regional will match-up with the winner of the Oxford, Mississippi regional, hosted by Ole Miss.
If the Hoosiers were to win the Austin regional and any of Tennessee Tech, Missouri State, or St. Louis were to steal the Oxford regional, the Hoosiers would likely host the super regional as seeding suggests they rated higher than all three of those teams on the NCAA’s s-curve. And if it comes down to stadium between Indiana and Tennessee Tech as two-seeds, Bart Kaufman Field seats more than twice as many fans as Bush Stadium in Cookeville.