Arkansas Enters NCAA Baseball Tournament With Dreams of Omaha

Arkansas Enters NCAA Baseball Tournament With Dreams of Omaha
Fact Checked by Michael Peters

The Arkansas Razorbacks’ impressive season paid off with a No. 3 national seed and the right to host the Fayetteville Regional for the 10th time overall and fifth time since 2017 starting Friday at Baum-Walker Stadium.

Coach Dave Van Horn’s Razorbacks (41-16) reached the semifinals of the Southeastern Conference postseason tournament and they carry a home record of 30-4 into a Game 1 matchup with fourth-seed Santa Clara (35-18) at 2 p.m. on ESPN+. In the other Fayetteville Regional game, No. 2 regional seed and Big 12 champion TCU (37-22) faces third-seed Arizona (33-24) from the Pac-12 at 9 p.m. on ESPNU. 

“It’s an honor to be a top eight (seed),” Van Horn said after the field was announced. “We’ve had a lot of things happen to us this season as far as injuries and sickness. You know other teams have as well, it just seemed like ours hit all at the same time. Our players found a way to get through it and I’m extremely proud of them. It’s a new season and it’s all about what we do from here.” 

Arkansas sports betting site Betly Sportsbook lists the Razorbacks at +900 to win the national championship.

The other eight national seeds are No. 1 Wake Forest (47-10), No. 2. Florida (44-14), No. 4 Clemson (43-17), No. 5 LSU (43-15), No 6. Vanderbilt (41-18), No. 7 Virginia (45-12) and No. 8 Stanford (38-16). 

The rest of the top 16 teams hosting regionals are No. 9 Miami (Florida) (40-19), No. 10 Coastal Carolina (39-19), No. 11 Oklahoma St. (41-18), No. 12 Kentucky (36-18), No. 13 Auburn (34-21-1), No. 14 Indiana St. (42-15), No. 15 South Carolina (39-19) and No. 16 Alabama (40-19).

NCAA Championship Odds

Team Odds
Wake Forest+400
South Carolina+2500
Texas A&M+3000
Oklahoma State+3000
Odds provided by Caesars Sportsbook. There are no national operators in the state such as Caesars Sportsbook Arkansas.

Razorbacks Could Host Super Regional

If the Razorbacks advance, they will earn the right to also host a Super Regional against the winner of the Terre Haute Regional in a best-of-three series to decide who goes to the College World Series in Omaha, Neb., from June 15-26. Indiana State is hosting Iowa, North Carolina and Wright State this weekend.

Arkansas is one of a record-tying 10 SEC teams in the field, and it’s a record that eight of those teams are hosting regionals. Playing against all of those teams each week in the SEC season should prepare the Razorbacks for tournament play.

“It’s hard to play a tougher schedule, that’s why our strength of schedule ended up in the top 5 in the country and RPI because we won enough of those,” Van Horn said. “We’re not going to be shocked by the talent level of anyone coming into the regional.” 

TCU at the regional gives the Razorbacks a chance to exact revenge for one of their 16 losses this season. The Horned Frogs blasted Arkansas 18-6 in the second game of the year at the College Baseball Showdown at Globe Life Field in Arlington back on Feb. 18.

“What a really talented team, older team, veteran team, good mix of speed and defense, power,” Van Horn said of TCU. “We felt like we’d get somebody from the area. I did watch them win the Big 12 championship game. We all had a thought they would be headed this way. They’ve had a super year.”

The Razorbacks’ offense is led by Jace Bohrofen (.318, 14 HRs, 48 RBIs), Kendall Diggs (.309, 11 HRs, 58 RBIs) and Jared Wegner (.308, 13 HRs, 48 RBIs). They are deep on the mound with Hagen Smith (8-1, 2.69 ERA), Hunter Hollan (8-2, 4.06 ERA) and Will McEntire (7-3, 5.11 ERA).

They’ll need those big bats and that pitching staff to stand tall over the next two weekends to advance to the school’s 12th College World Series and in back-to-back years for the first time since 2018 and 2019.



Douglas Pils has been a sports journalist for 30 years in Texas, Arkansas and New York having worked for the San Antonio Express-News, the Associated Press, The Dallas Morning News and Newsday. He most recently ran the Student Media Department at Texas A&M for eight years.

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