FAYETTEVILLE – The Arkansas Baseball team was picked to finish fourth in the tough Southeastern Conference Western Division by the league coaches it was announced on Monday.
The Razorbacks, ranked 22nd in the preseason Baseball America poll, earned 38 points in the SEC Coaches poll, six behind Alabama and 10 ahead of Auburn. The SEC West is widely regarded as one of the toughest divisions in the country as evidenced by the fact that LSU, Ole Miss, Alabama and Arkansas have all earned national rankings.
“I think that this shows the depth in our league,” Arkansas head coach Dave Van Horn said. “There is strength throughout the league and for me it was hard to vote because you could flip four or five teams and no one would argue. We are right where the national polls have put us and I think that it’s going to be a tremendous race.”
LSU was chosen to win the Western Division with 10 first-place votes and also chosen to win the league title with another 10 votes. Ole Miss was picked second in the West with two first-place votes and 54 points overall, 11 behind the chosen champion, LSU. Alabama was picked third with 44 votes followed by Arkansas (38), Auburn (28) and Mississippi St. (18).
In the Eastern Division, 2008 NCAA runner-up, Georgia, was picked to win the division with 62 points and 10 first-place votes. Florida earned the second spot in the division with 52 points and two first-place votes followed by Vanderbilt (40), South Carolina (37), Tennessee (28) and Kentucky (27).
The SEC Coaches voted on their predicted order of finish for each division as well as the league champion. Points were awarded on a 6-5-4-3-2-1 basis with no coach voting on his own team.
The Razorbacks begin the 2009 season on Friday afternoon against Washington State at Baum Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 3:05 p.m. For more information regarding Razorback baseball or University of Arkansas athletics please visit ArkansasRazorbacks.com.
|Western Division||Eastern Division|
|Team||Pts.||’08 SEC Rec/Finish||Team||Pts.||’08 SEC Rec/Finish|
|1) LSU (10)||65||18-11-1 / 1st||1) Georgia (10)||62||20-9-1 / 1st|
|2) Ole Miss (2)||54||15-15 / 3rd||2) Florida (2)||52||17-13 / 2nd|
|3) Alabama||44||16-14 / 2nd||3) Vanderbilt||40||15-14 / 4th|
|4) Arkansas||38||14-15 / 4th||4) South Carolina||37||15-15 / 5th|
|5) Auburn||28||11-19 / 5th||5) Tennessee||28||12-18 / 6th|
|6) Miss. State||18||9-21 / 6th||) Kentucky||27||16-14 / 3rd|
|SEC Champion: LSU (10); Georgia (1); Ole Miss (1)|