Nebraska In Good Position Going Into Home Stretch
A number of college baseball enthusiasts are forecasting Nebraska as being among the teams that will compete at the regional level for the opportunity to play in the College World Series. But that assumes some continued success. The final stretch of seven games over the next two weeks or so will be important.
First comes a three game road trip to Michigan State beginning Saturday. The Spartans are ranked 7th in the Big Ten (out of 11 teams since Wisconsin does not participate in baseball). On paper, you'd expect Nebraska to take two if not all three games against MSU. Then again, the Spartans have won 11 of their last 13 at home (albeit against the two worst teams in the conference and non-conference fodder).
There's a one-game trip to Creighton next Tuesday, which could be a challenge given how well the Bluejays have played over the past month. It will also give the team a taste of playing in TD Ameritrade park, where the Big Ten tournament will be held.
Then comes a pretty important home stand against Illinois. The Illini have remained neck and neck with the Huskers in the conference standings, only separated by non-conference games in terms of wins and losses overall. The Illini first travel to Iowa next weekend before a final weekend road trip to face the Huskers. The series in Lincoln should determine who finishes second and who's third going into the conference tournament. Some nice spring weather could make this a great ticket to have.
The conference tournament is a double elimination format. The second and third seeds would likely face each other fairly early, meaning another Illinois matchup. Also lurking is the Indiana Hoosiers team that has only lost two conference games all season.
If Nebraska can capture at least four of the next seven and six of the next eleven, that may be enough to stay in the hunt for a regional berth. Anything short of that could be too little. Few things can be as riveting as high stakes baseball. The Sunday and Monday games at Michigan State will be broadcast on the Big Ten Network. You can expect to see the conference tournament games on BTN as well. It isn't football, but it isn't bad either.