Bethune Cookman baseball, all season long, has had to prove itself. And it did. The upset of No. 4 ranked powerhouse University of Florida in the NCAA Gainesville Regional and nationally rank South Florida deservingly pushed the Wildcats into the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) Top 30 ranking for the first time in program history.
The Wildcats defeated the Florida Gators 6-2 on Sunday night at the Gainesville Regional. The win was the biggest upset of the NCAA Tournament to date as Florida was also the No. 2 ranked RPI team in the nation.
The win is considered one of the biggest, if not the biggest in program history and is the first time the Wildcats have ever beaten two nationally rank teams in the same season. Outside of the Florida and South Florida win, the last time BC defeated a ranked team was March 2014, when they beat No. 13 University of Miami.
Bethune Cookman, 36-25 overall, was one game away from going to the Super Regionals, but lost a winner-take-all final to the Florida Gators 6-1 in the second game of the regional finals.
The Wildcats, throughout the season, received votes in the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association poll and at one point during the season, Bethune Cookman was a Top 20 ranked RPI (rating percentage index) team. The rating index takes into consideration both won-loss record as well as a team’s strength of schedule.
Jackson State University also received votes in the NCBWA Top 30 rankings.
The 2017 poll voters come from 40 college baseball writers and related media persons from throughout the nation.
|NCBWA DIVISION I POLL (JUNE 7)|
|6||Long Beach State||Big West||41-18-1||10|
|9||Cal State Fullerton||Big West||37-21||16|
|11||Missouri State||Missouri Valley||43-18||21|
|14||Sam Houston State||Southland||44-21||–|
|18||Texas Tech||Big 12||45-17||4|
|21||Southern Miss||Conference USA||50-16||13|
|28||Dallas Baptist||Missouri Valley||42-21||–|
|Others receiving votes (listed alphabetically): Baylor, BYU, Coastal Carolina, Florida Gulf Coast University, Gonzaga, Indiana, Jackson State, Loyola-Marymount, Michigan, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Saint John’s, San Diego State, SE Louisiana, South Alabama, South Florida, Tennessee Tech, UCF, UCLA, UNC Greensboro, West Virginia, Xavier, Yale.|
|Dropped out: Michigan (18), St. John’s (19), Nebraska (23), Oklahoma (24), UCF (25), Coastal Carolina (29), Baylor (30).|
|By conference: SEC 8, ACC 7, Big 12 3, Pac-12 3, Big West 2, Missouri Valley 2, American Athletic 1, Atlantic 10 1, Conference USA 1, Mid-Eastern 1, Southland 1.|