Wednesday, June 25, 2008
It's now down to one game. After spotting Georgia 5 runs, Fresno State first got even, then got mad as they piled on 19 runs en route to a 19-10 shellacking. WAC Player of the year Steve Susdorf and super stud Tommy Mendonca belted HR's and the lowest seeded team to ever play for a championship, gets a chance to be the champion in a winner takes all contest tomorrow at 7 EST.
That's what this series is all about. How nice to actually have an NCAA event that not only has a championship play-off, but makes each round a double elimination to get there and a best of three to win. How the heck did the NCAA get that right, yet can't seem to solve the obvious in football and fix that mess of a system? Goes to show you that baseball gurus are just plain smarter than the football dudes.
The baseball players have been out of school for over a month and yet they are still playing. What a concept. Come to think of it, many students are off for at least the first two-three weeks of January during the winter break...Wouldn't it be nice to use that time to have a NCAA football play-off? But, I digress.
I can't reiterate enough...This college World Series is the best run, most exciting NCAA championship of all of the college events. It's our national past time at its purest form. First, unlike footballs Bowl Championship Series, which is neither a championship or a series, the College World Series truly tests the strength of each team with a best of three real life "series". Second, as I stated before, there's some real pro material playing in Omaha...many top ten round guys that have a real good shot of making the home town bigs someday...some sooner than others.
I don't even mind the metal bats like I used to. It really doesn't seem to matter. Mendonca's blasts would be out of the park if he was swinging balsa wood...someone should check to see if there is a real Bulldog in a human suit playing third base for Fresno.
And, there's a human side to this series with the touching story of Erik Wetzel and the last moments with his mother, traveling around the country in a motor home with Erik's dad, so she could see him play during her bout with cancer.
Finally, Omaha couldn't be more gracious. It's a county fair atmosphere...a summer celebration...The towns bars and restaurants seem to be really alive and the talk of the town revolves around these games as it has for the past 50 years. This Midwestern River town never grows tired of this event. And it shouldn't...especially this year...a year that saw 7 first rounders, 2 supplemental round players, 2 second rounders and 2 third rounders play in Omaha. Overall, nearly 50 players that were drafted in the first three rounds played in this year NCAA tourney. That's some serious talent. This is no ordinary amateur tournament. We all will be reading a lot more about many of these players in years to come. Some may be coming to a pro park near you some day...and you can say you saw them play in the College World Series.
Go Bulldogs...Ok, You all should know which one by now!