FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The No. 16 Arkansas baseball team opens its 93rd season this weekend, welcoming North Dakota to town for a three-game series at Baum Stadium. All three games will be available on SECN+ and the WatchESPN App.
Fri. | 3:05p | (ARK) James Teague vs. (UND) Andrew Thome
Sat. | 11:35p | (ARK) Dominic Taccolini vs. (UND) Zach Muckenhirn
Sun. | Game 2 | (ARK) TBA vs. (UND) Alex Twenge
All three opening-weekend games will be broadcasted live on SEC Network Plus and the WatchESPN App with Alex Perlman (PXP) and Troy Eklund (Analyst) on the call. Every game of the 2015 baseball season can be heard live on the Razorback Sports Network from IMG College with Phil Elson and Rick Schaeffer.
Season tickets, Friday/Saturday SEC mini plans and single-game tickets are available for purchase at the Razorback Ticket Center, by phone at 1-800-982-HOGS (4647) or by clicking here.
• No. 16 Arkansas opens its 93rd season of baseball this weekend, welcoming North Dakota to town for a three-game series at Baum Stadium. All three games will be available on SECN+ and the WatchESPN App.
• The Razorbacks enter the season ranked in two preseason polls, checking in at No. 16 according to Perfect Game and No. 36 in the Collegiate Baseball Top 40 poll.
• The Razorbacks are 44-11 in season openers since the 1960 season, including 20 consecutive wins. Coach Van Horn is 12-0 in season openers at Arkansas and has outscored the opponent 103-27 along the way.
• Arkansas returns six position starters and seven pitchers from a squad that posted 40 wins and made the program’s 13th consecutive trip to the NCAA Tournament during the 2014 season.
• Arkansas is 252-73-1 (.774) all-time in the month of February, including a 7-0 record last season in the opening month of the year.
• The Razorbacks are one of just seven teams in the country to advance to each of the last 13 NCAA Tournaments as they look to make it 14 straight during the 2015 season.
• The Feb. 13 start date is the earliest Arkansas has opened the season since 2007 when the Razorbacks opened on Feb. 2 against Louisiana Tech.
No Walk in the Park
The Razorbacks are scheduled to play 10 opponents (26 games) ranked in preseason polls in 2015, including seven of its 10 conference series. Arkansas will open SEC play at consensus No. 1 and defending National Champion Vanderbilt, before returning home the following the weekend to battle No. 2 LSU.
DVH Milestone Watch
Head coach Dave Van Horn is closing on 500 wins at Arkansas, currently sitting at 484-270 (.641) in 12 seasons at the helm of the Razorbacks. He is averaging over 40 wins per season and a 16-game winning streak to open the year would give the skipper 500 wins at Arkansas on March 11 against Gonzaga.
Friday marks the first meeting between Arkansas and North Dakota. The Razorbacks have only played three current members of the Western Athletic Conference, going 10-3 all-time since 1980. Arkansas has a 7-1 record against Northern Colorado, a 2-2 mark against UT-Pan American and a 1-0 record against New Mexico State. North Dakota was picked to finish ninth in the 10-team WAC, while Sacramento was tabbed as the preseason favorite.
Living at Baum
This weekend marks the first three of 35 scheduled home games at Baum Stadium this season. Arkansas is 424-168 all-time at Baum Stadium, including a 25-10 record last year. The Razorbacks’ best record at Baum Stadium by percentage came during the 1999 season when it posted a 25-5 (.833) home record and captured the SEC West Division Title.
Arkansas’ highly touted incoming recruiting class features 17 players, including 11 incoming freshmen and six transfers. The class was ranked No. 1 in the country by Perfect Game and No. 4 in the land by Baseball America.
Arkansas is coming off a 2014 campaign that saw 255,274 total tickets sold for an average of 8,234 fans per game to rank No. 2 in the country behind LSU. The Razorbacks have sold over one million tickets over the last four years and have ranked in the top five in national attendance each of the last 10 seasons.
Perfect Game Class Rankings
Arkansas had six players featured in the Perfect Game USA preseason class rankings, as Jacob Stone was tabbed as the No. 17 senior in the country, while Trey Killian was ranked No. 53 among juniors. Zach Jackson ranked No. 37 among sophomores, and the trio of Keaton McKinney (19), Luke Bonfield (41) and Jonah Patten (84) were all ranked nationally among incoming freshmen.
#ProHogs in Record Numbers
Arkansas has had 17 players drafted in the last two seasons, more than any other collegiate program in the country. The Razorbacks had six players selected in the 2014 MLB Draft and a school-record 11 players taken in 2013.
The Razorbacks have put together three consecutive seasons with an ERA under 3.00 and have the lowest cumulative ERA in the country over the last three years at 2.47. Arkansas is the only team in the nation to rank in the top 15 in ERA over this time period.
Hogs to Play 12 National TV Games
The Razorbacks are set for an unprecedented television schedule in 2015, playing 12 nationally televised games and four more on Cox Sports. Arkansas will play eight games on SEC Network, two games on ESPNU, one on ESPN2 and one of CBS Sports Network. Arkansas fans will have Razorback baseball at their fingertips throughout the 2015 season as 55 of 56 games will be available through SEC Network Plus and the WatchESPN App. SEC Network and ESPN2 will conclude the regular season with comprehensive coverage of the SEC Baseball Tournament, marking the first time the entire tournament has aired on national television.
Arkansas will hit the road next weekend and travel to Mobile, Alabama to take on No. 22 UCF on Friday, South Alabama on Saturday and No. 14 Maryland on Sunday. All three games will be televised on Cox Sports TV and be available on the WatchESPN App.
For more information on Arkansas baseball, follow @RazorbackBSB on Twitter.