Arkansas Ranked 24th in Preseason Baseball Coa
BY ANDRES FOCIL
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Coming off a trip to the College World Series a season ago, Arkansas will open the 2005 season with a No. 24 national ranking after the Sports Weekly/ESPN Preseason Top 25 College Coaches’ Poll was released on Thursday.
“I think 24th is a fine place to start for us,” Arkansas Head Coach Dave Van Horn said. “We still have a lot of questions to be answered on the mound before we move up on that list. The teams that were picked ahead of us have a lot of returning pitching, and that is probably the difference between us and them right now.”
The Sports Weekly/ESPN Coaches’ Poll is selected by 40 Division I-A coaches representing the American Baseball Coaches Association.
The Razorbacks return six position starters and staff ace Charley Boyce from a team that went 45-24 and advanced to the College World Series for the first time since 1989. Arkansas finished the 2004 season tied for seventh in the Sports Weekly/ESPN Poll.
The Southeastern Conference looks strong heading into the 2005 season with six teams ranked in the top 25 and three teams – LSU, South Carolina and Georgia – ranked in the top 10. LSU leads the way at No. 4, with South Carolina checking in at No. 7 and Georgia at No. 8.
“That is a compliment to our league, having six teams in the top 25 and three in the top 10,” Van Horn said. “We are always going against the top teams in the country in our conference. It looks like it is going to be another up year in our league.”
The Razorbacks open their regular season in Arlington, Texas on Feb. 11-13 with a four-game round robin tournament with Dallas Baptist and Texas-Arlington. Arkansas hosts Minnesota for a three-game series on Feb. 25-27 in the first home series of the 2005 campaign.
Tickets for the 2005 Razorback baseball season are available online at www.hogwired.com or by contacting the UA ticket office at (479) 575-5151 or 1-800-982-HOGS.
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