4/2/2012 9:25:54 PM
The ISRs are firming up. Two (at the time I wrote this)--Oregon State and Oregon--are exactly the same as the NCBWA poll rankings and three others--UCLA, Stanford, Arizona--are within three spots of the poll. So this week’s listings are again sorted by NCBWA and ISR (in parentheses).
This week's games
Week 8 Series
- #19 (19) Oregon at #5 (3) UCLA
- #17 (17) Oregon State at #23 (37) Arizona State
- #6 (4) Stanford at (31) Washington
- (50) California at (30) USC
- #10 (7) Arizona at (186) Utah
- (146) Seattle at (59) Wazzu
- This week’s top series matches two top-20 teams, Oregon, a team tied for 3rd, with UCLA, a team tied for 1st. Oregon jumped in most polls and in the ISRs after sweeping ASU last week and sits at #19 in the NCBWA poll, even with their ISR. UCLA, after 3 embarrassing losses in their first five games (to Maryland twice and Baylor), went on a twelve-game win streak after that and have lost only two of their last 20 games. Both teams need to do well to stay close to Arizona, which will have an easier path this week.
- The other team tied for 3rd, Oregon State, visits Tempe to take on a frustrated Arizona State, currently in unfamiliar territory for Sun Devil fans--tied with Utah for 9th place. At 37, ASU has an uncommonly low (for them) ISR right now too, making it seem OSU, at 17 in the NCBWA poll and ISR, will have the upper hand. But they’ll be playing in ASU’s “crib” and facing a Sun Devil team currently on a four-game losing streak and not used to getting abused. This will be a hard-fought series.
- It seems strange that Stanford, ranked #2 nationally last week, would be sitting alone in 6th place after two weeks of conference play with a 2-4 record. They are still in the top ten in most polls and in the ISRs, but they play in Seattle against a resourceful 5th place Washington team with an ISR of 31. And Seattle’s weather this time of year does not favor teams that aren’t used to playing there.
- Cal may be on a rebound after coming back from a ten-run defeat in the opener with Texas to beat the Longhorns twice. They face a higher-ranked USC team at Rod Dedeaux Field. Both teams have a lot of potential and could still play an important role in the conference championship, even if neither will challenge for the honors. The next few weeks will be the springboard stretch of the schedule for both teams. A series win this week will be a big boost going forward.
- The blowout series this week, not surprisingly, will also take place in SLC, as the new kids to beat, the Arizona Wildcats, take on Utah. I don’t think Utah will overtake (undertake?) Cal for last place after this week, but it should get closer.
- Week 8’s nonconference series has Seattle at Wazzu. The Redhawks (14-10) have an ISR higher than Utah’s and some wins over UW, UC Davis (who beat Utah), BYU, and San Jose State. Not stellar, but certainly within the realm of possibility that they could steal one or two from the Cougs.
4/5/2012 11:13:05 PM
RD, be careful to count your Ducks before they have hatched.
Ducks play well vs good teams.. need to adjust that to ALL teams lol. Going for the series on Friday. Funny that Kendall admitted that Keudell is a good college pitcher.. Hmm 22 scoreless right now.. and the last two games were vs no slouches. A series win by the ducks, and a series loss by the beavs would ensure I win this week. REDEMPTION!!!
edited by Riverduck on 4/5/2012