College Teams to Watch This Spring

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Spring brings final tournaments for basketball teams, the start of outdoor track and field, and the beginning of beautiful afternoons at the baseball park. Nothing is more fun than getting out and cheering on your favorite college athletes as the weather gets nice. Here are some top teams to be on the lookout for this spring.

Let’s kick out the end of winter with the beginning of the NCAA basketball tournament. You can’t start talking about men’s college basketball without Kentucky. This season Kentucky achieved an almost perfect SEC record with their only loss being the championship game of the SEC Tournament. Not too far behind Kentucky is Syracuse. Syracuse went undefeated at home this season for the 2nd time in all of school history. They set the Big East record when they won their 17th league win of the year. What’s college men’s basketball without Kansas? They’re consistently good and this year is no different, Kansas went 26-5 on the season.

Continuing with college men’s basketball, let’s talk North Carolina. This season North Carolina’s Zeller, Henson, and Barnes each earned First team ACC honors. These honors made them first in their school and 2nd ever in the ACC to have three players from one team earn first team all-conference honors. Missouri men’s basketball team is under their first year with Coach Frank Haith. In his first year, Haith has led Missouri to a 14-4 regular season record earning himself the title of Big 12 Coach of the Year.

Women’s basketball is coming to an end as well. This year Baylor went undefeated in the regular under coach of the year Kim Mulkey. Baylor’s Griner and Sims earned first team All-Big 12 honors. Stanford continued it’s at home winning streak this season bumping their number up to 78 straight at home wins! This is the longest at home winning streak in the nation.  Connecticut led the nation this season by only allowing just less than 46 points a game. UCONN hasn’t lost consecutive games in 19 years!

Let’s talk baseball. Florida men’s baseball team’s season is just starting but they are already off to a great start. They swept #8 Miami and have had at least 1 homerun in 9 out of 10 games this year. Last year, Florida made it to the College World Series championship game, and this year they begin seeded #1 in the country. 2011 College World Series Champion, South Carolina begins their season seeded #2. They have some of the best pitchers in the nation. Through ten games this season they have 100 strikeouts to 26 walks in 91.1 innings and have only allowed 22 runs on 49 hits. South Carolina’s pitchers are leading the nation. #3 ranked Stanford is off to a great start as well beginning their season by sweeping #7 Texas. Number 4 ranked Rice men’s baseball team is led by Hall of Fame coach Wayne Graham. Their record so far is 11-1 which is the best start Rice has had since their national championship team of 2003. A fun team to watch this spring will be the Nebraska Cornhuskers. Although unranked, Nebraska is being led this year by a new coach. Coach Darin Erstad, a former husker, is a two time MLB All-Star, and is sure to be paving the way for the huskers. Nebraska’s teams only consist of 4 seniors, leaving this young team with a bright future ahead.

Baseball season means it’s also softball season! Number 1 ranked Alabama is 17-0 so far on their season which ties them for the 3rd best season start in their school’s history. Number 2 ranked California is also doing well so far with a 16-0 record. Number 3 Florida is holding up their ranking so far as well with a 19-1 record.

Outdoor track is approaching and there are 3 major programs to look out for, beginning with Texas A&M. The Texas A&M men’s and women’s track programs swept the Big 12 indoor this season, and the Big 12 outdoor last season! Also, Florida State’s men’s team won the ACC indoor championship for the 9th time in 10 years, while the women finished 2nd. Rounding out the top track teams, LSU has a very strong program. Their men’s team is seeded #4, while their women are seeded #3. LSU took 4th at the indoor championships this past winter.

Whether you’re an athlete or a fan, spring is an exciting time for sports. Enjoy the warm weather and have fun watching some of the nation’s top college sports teams!

-Speedy G.

I’m reading Management: Leading and Collaborating in the Competitive World

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