The field in Omaha is set for the 2021 College World Series. It will be a wide-open race to the national championship as many of the favorites made it to the biggest stage. That was not the case for No. 1 overall seed Arkansas as NC State won the Fayetteville Super Regional.
No. 2 Texas
The Longhorns are one of the most prestigious programs in the country and will make their fourth College World Series since 2010. It will be head coach David Pierce’s second CWS appearance at Texas. The Longhorns are led by a strong pitching staff including Ty Madden and Tristan Stevens who have been weekend starters throughout the year. Freshman Pete Hansen has arrived on the scene as the third starter boasting a 1.84 ERA that has improved throughout the season.
No. 3 Tennessee
It will be the first trip to Omaha in 16 years for the Volunteers after a stellar regular season and cruising through the first two weekends of the NCAA Tournament. They will be one of the favorites in the CWS with Arkansas being knocked out by NC State. With good starting pitching, the Vols will give themselves a chance at a national championship.
No. 4 Vanderbilt
The defending champions return to Omaha with phenomenal starting pitching. The 1-2 punch of Kumar Rocker and Jack Leiter has been historically good for the Commodores. Rocker is second in the nation in wins with 12, just two away from the Vanderbilt season record. Leiter ranks third in Vanderbilt history for strikeouts in a season with 156.
No. 5 Arizona
The Wildcats return to Omaha for the second time under head coach Jay Johnson after finishing runner-up in 2016 in Johnson’s first season. This 2021 squad is an offensive juggernaut hitting .329 over the course of the season, which is good for fourth in the nation. Arizona showed its offensive prowess with nine and 16 runs in its wins against Ole Miss on Super Regional weekend.
No. 7 Mississippi State
The Bulldogs are becoming a mainstay in Omaha as they make their third consecutive trip to the College World Series. Led by an elite pitching staff consisting of Christian McLeod, Will Bednar and Landon Sims, as well as solid hitting from Tanner Allen and Rowdey Jordan, this well-rounded Mississippi State team is sure to make noise in Omaha.
No. 9 Stanford
The Cardinal return to Omaha for the first time since 2008 behind a strong all-around performance in the NCAA Tournament. In Lubbock, Brock Jones hit three home runs in game two. He has reached base in 49 of Stanford’s 53 games in 2021. Game two also featured a dominant pitching performance from junior Alex Williams, who threw a two-hit shutout.
The Wolfpack came into the tournament as one of the nation’s hottest teams and shocked everyone by winning games two and three in Fayetteville after losing game one 21-2. Freshman Jose Torres was the hero with the game-winning home run in the top of the ninth off Kevin Kopps, who is one of the best pitchers in the country. The Wolfpack will head to the College World Series for just the third time and will likely be a fan favorite in Omaha.
The Cavaliers return to the College World Series for the first time since winning it all in 2015. This is a relentless Virginia team as they became just the third team since the NCAA tournament field expanded to 64 teams to lose its opening games in the Regional and Super Regional rounds and advance to the College World Series.