Road To OKC: Field Of 64 Projection (4/29/19)
Entering one of the last weekends of the regular season and less than one month away from the NCAA Tournament, Softball America presents its second projection of the Field of 64.
Keep in mind that this Field of 64 is projecting the remainder of the season and does not necessarily reflect if the season ended today.
In our initial projection, the SEC led the field with six teams slated as Regional hosts. The Pac-12 and Big 12 each had three Regional hosts. The ACC, Big Ten, Colonial, and Sun Belt each boasted one Regional host. That hasn't changed.
Oklahoma takes the top seed in our initial projection. The Sooners are riding the nation's longest win streak at 35 games after another series sweep but this time at Iowa State.
UCLA and Arizona check in as the No. 2 and No. 3 seeds, respectively. Both teams have one conference loss and it's looking like the the Pac-12 crown and the No. 2 overall seed could come down to a series showdown in the final week of the regular season. Our third Pac-12 host, Washington has moved up to the No. 4 seed.
In what has become the norm, a collection of SEC teams are battling for SEC Tournament positioning and a shot to host Regionals and Super Regionals. In our current projection, Alabama (5) and LSU (8) land Super Regionals spots with Ole Miss (9), Florida (10), Tennessee (11), and Kentucky (13) as Regional hosts.
Alabama travels to LSU and Ole Miss visits Georgia this weekend, creating intriguing matchups that are certain to impact Regional decisions.
We selected one Big Ten Regional host – Northwestern (15) – in our initial projection and we have stuck with them entering this weekend. Minnesota will host the Wildcats this weekend and we believe the winner of that series will be the lone Big Ten Regional host.
Despite recent losses, Florida State remains as a Super Regional host at No. 7. James Madison has the No. 12 seed, while Louisiana checks in this week at No. 16.
Oklahoma State's electric weekend against Texas Tech solidified a Regional host site in our opinion with a No. 15 seeding this week. The Big 12 Regular Season Championship is on the line against No. 1 Oklahoma this weekend.
Softball America will continue to update the projected field as we inch closer to the NCAA Tournament. Check back early next week for the latest version.
(Note: ^ is host, * is automatic qualifier)
|PROJECTED FIELD OF 64|
|Norman, OK.||Lafayette, LA.|
|1. (1) Oklahoma^*||1. (16) Louisiana^|
|2. Missouri||2. Auburn|
|3. Oregon State||3. Louisiana Tech*|
|4. Marist*||4. Boston University*|
|Los Angeles, CA||Stillwater, OK.|
|1. (2) UCLA^*||1. (15) Oklahoma State*|
|2. Arkansas||2. Tulsa|
|3. Cal State Fullerton*||3. Sam Houston*|
|4. Weber State*||4. UMass-Lowell*|
|Tucson, AZ.||Chicago, IL.|
|1. (3) Arizona^||1. (14) Northwestern^|
|2. Texas Tech||2. Louisville|
|3. UNLV||3. North Dakota State*|
|4. BYU*||4. Illinois-Chicago*|
|Seattle, WA.||Lexington, KY.|
|1. (4) Washington*||1. (13) Kentucky^|
|2. South Carolina||2. Minnesota|
|3. Boise State||3. Notre Dame|
|4. Seattle*||4. Miami (OH)*|
|Tuscaloosa, AL.||Harrisonburg, VA.|
|1. (5) Alabama^*||1. (12) James Madison^*|
|2. South Florida*||2. Virginia Tech*|
|3. Wisconsin||3. Mississippi State|
|4. Samford*||4. St. John's*|
|Austin, TX.||Knoxville, TN.|
|1. (6) Texas^||1. (11) Tennessee^|
|2. Arizona State||2. North Carolina|
|3. Colorado State*||3. Indiana|
|4. Texas Southern*||4. Fordham*|
|Tallahassee, FL.||Gainesville, FL|
|1. (7) Florida State^||1. (10) Florida^|
|2. Georgia||2. Michigan|
|3. Ohio State||3. Longwood*|
|4. Bethune-Cookman*||4. LIU-Brooklyn*|
|Baton Rouge, LA.||Oxford, MS.|
|1. (8) LSU^||1. (9) Ole Miss^|
|2. Drake*||2. Stanford|
|3. Houston||3. Lipscomb|
|4. Harvard*||4. Jacksonville State|
Five College Softball Programs On The Rise
We explored five Division I programs that we believe are on the rise in college softball.
Last Four In
First Four Out
San Jose State