2011 Gainesville Super Regional


2. Florida Gators

Gainesville, Florida

At-large bid from SEC, Won Gainesville Regional

2011 record: 22-8, 48-16 (tied for first in SEC East)

Head coach: Kevin O'Sullivan (Virginia, 1991)

Record at school: 171-79, 4 years

Overall record: same

Assistant coaches: Brad Weitzel, Craig Bell, Don Norris

Team offense: .311 BA, 413 R, 58 HR, .459 SLG%, .382 OB%, 56-84 SB

Team pitching: 2.97 ERA, 572 IP, 533 H, 116 BB, 427 K

Top hitters: Mike Zunino (.371/16/62), Josh Adams (.330/5/40), Daniel Pigott (.332/2/35/14-17 SB), Preston Tucker (.319/13/65), Brian Johnson (.312/5/27), Nolan Fontana (.309/4/44), Austin Maddox (.283/6/35)

Top pitchers: Nick Maronde (0-0, 1.66, 2 SV, 38 IP, 24 H, 7 BB, 50 K), Greg Larson (1-1, 2.25, 36 IP, 35 H, 6 BB, 27 K), Hudson Randall (9-3, 2.38, 102 IP, 90 H, 10 BB, 54 K), Karsten Whitson (8-0, 2.42, 81.2 IP, 72 H, 24 BB, 77 K), Tommy Toledo (5-3, 3.21, 33.2 IP, 32 H, 8 BB, 31 K), Brian Johnson (8-3, 3.66, 78.2 IP, 75 H, 15 BB, 70 K)

Last NCAA appearance: 2010 (3-0 at Gainesville Regional, 2-0 at Gainesville Super Regional, 0-2 at College World Series)

Notes: For the third straight year, Florida captured the Gainesville Regional. Its opponent is a familiar one – Mississippi State. The Gators won their series in Starkville by taking two of three and also picked up a win over the Bulldogs in the SEC tourney. Three of the four games between the teams were decided by two wins (UF 2-1 in those games). Preston Tucker had a huge Regional and was the Regional MOP (7 for 14, 3 HR, 11 RBI). In 15 career NCAA tourney games, Tucker (.551 slugging percentage) is batting .431 with 7 HR, and 27 RBI. Nolan Fontana drove in the game-winning run to beat Miami 5-4 in the second game. Injuries are still an issue for the Gators. Two-way player Brian Johnson suffered a concussion when he was pitching in the SEC tourney and was hit in the back of the head by a Zunino throw to second on a steal attempt. He missed the Regional and has returned to practice and could play this weekend. Austin Maddox injured his foot and is questionable for this weekend. SEC Player of the Year Mike Zunino is one of the best catchers in the country and slugs .668.  Hudson Randall has tossed two complete games and has 10 walks in 102 innings. As a staff, the Gators walk less than one batter a game. Freshman Karsten Whitson was the ninth overall pick in last year's Major League Draft but joined the Gators instead, limiting opponents to a .240 average. Maddox was a catcher in high school but now plays first and is a relief pitcher (0.74 ERA) – he allowed 14 hits and struck out 21 in 24.1 innings. Coach Kevin O'Sullivan has been Florida coach for four years and the Gators hosted a Regional for the third straight time, the first time that's happened in school history. Eleven Gators were taken in the MLB Draft, led by Nick Maronde in the third round.


Mississippi State Bulldogs

Starkville, Mississippi

At-large bid from SEC, Won Atlanta Regional

2011 record: 14-16, 37-23 (tied for second in SEC West)

Head coach: John Cohen (Mississippi State, 1990)

Record at school: 85-85, 3 years

Overall record: 406-281-1, 12 years

Assistant coaches: Butch Thompson, Lane Burroughs

Team offense: .282 BA, 369 R, 28 HR, .391 SLG%, .384 OB%, 88-118 SB

Team pitching: 4.24 ERA, 529 IP, 540 H, 213 BB, 471 K

Top hitters: Jarrod Parks (.365/3/36), Nick Vickerson (.314/7/31/25-28 SB), C.T. Bradford (.309/0/34), Jaron Shepherd (.295/4/28), Cody Freeman (.281/2/27), Daryl Norris (.277/0/20), Adam Frazier (.269/0/14), Brent Brownlee (.264/1/21), Jonathan Ogden (.268/8/36)

Top pitchers: Caleb Reed (0-1, 1.40, 12 SV, 57.2 IP, 46 H, 22 BB, 64 K), Daryl Norris (2-0, 2.49, 25.1 IP, 20 H, 10 BB, 19 K), Taylor Stark (3-0, 3.12, 17.1 IP, 5 H, 7 BB, 18 K), Evan Mitchell (6-1, 3.47, 46.2 IP, 45 H, 21 BB, 47 K), Kendall Graveman (5-0, 3.71, 53.1 IP, 52 H, 9 BB, 35 K), Nick Routt (3-3, 3.78, 52.1 IP, 57 H, 21 BB, 49 K), Luis Pollorena (7-5, 3.97, 56.2 IP, 57 H, 20 BB, 34 K), Devin Jones (2-5, 4.45, 54.2 IP, 53 H, 23 BB, 48 K), Chris Stratton (5-7, 5.21, 74.1 IP, 81 H, 26 BB, 74 K)

Last NCAA appearance: 2007 (3-0 at Tallahassee Regional, 2-0 at Starkville Super Regional, 0-2 at College World Series)

Notes: The Bulldogs have made the Super Regionals their past two trips to the NCAA Tourney (2007 and 2011). In 2007, MSU swept Clemson to reach their eighth appearance in the College World Series. In all, this is the fourth time the Bulldogs have reached a Super Regional. Coach John Cohen played on the 1990 MSU CWS team and returned to his alma mater after coaching Kentucky, where he was honored by CollegeBaseballInsider.com as national coach of the year in 2006. Nick Routt threw the Bulldogs’ first complete game of the year in the Atlanta Regional clincher against Georgia Tech. MSU starters had a 1.96 ERA in the Regional, and State never trailed in Atlanta. Jarrod Parks had a rough regional, seeing his average drop from .383 to .365, but did set a school record by getting hit for the 20th time. Parks missed all of last year with a back injury and led the Bulldogs in hits and on-base average – he was walked or hit 63 times and boasts an OBA of .513. Nick Vickerson batted 100 points better than his 2010 campaign and also leads MSU in slugging at .539. Caleb Reed entered this season with a 3-8 career record with a 7.44 ERA and turned into one of the SEC's top closers. Daryl Norris contributed both in the field and on the mound. The Bulldogs meet a familiar foe in Florida – they lost three of four games to the Gators, but three of the games were decided by two runs, with the Bulldogs going 1-2 in those games. MSU is 30-7 when scoring first, 30-3 when leading after seven and 4-20 when trailing after seven.