UConn Baseball’s run in the American Athletic Conference Tournament came to an end on Saturday with a 13-3 loss to Houston in the semifinals. Losing a pair of games to the Cougars in the tournament combined with losing four top-100 wins when Memphis fell out has put the Huskies squarely on the bubble heading into Selection Monday.
Teams from the north play more road games than other teams because they must travel to warmer climates in the early part of the season. The Huskies played 40 games away from J.O. Christian Field, most of the other teams around the bubble. Their 20 road wins marks one of the highest totals in the country.
Most of the other teams on the bubble play many more home games than the Huskies have the opportunity to play and travel significantly less than UConn does.
The competitiveness of the conference will also benefit them. The American is the fourth-best league in the country by RPI. UConn finished third in that conference and is competing for a Regional spot against teams from the SEC and ACC which finished much lower in their final conference standings.
UConn has an RPI of 38 heading into Selection Monday, which is in the middle of other teams on the bubble, higher than Nebraska, (44th), Auburn (45th), Gonzaga (50th) but lower than Maryland (34th), St. John’s (36th) and Ole Miss (37th).
These bubble teams were hurt by multiple at-large teams losing their conference championship games on Sunday, such as St. John’s falling to Xavier in the Big East and Oklahoma State getting the better of Texas in the Big 12. There may be fewer spots available for at-large contenders.
If the committee values The American close to what they value leagues like the SEC and ACC, then the Huskies have a very good chance to crack the field of 64, but until then, they sit squarely on the bubble.
The Selection Show will air on Monday at 12 p.m. on ESPN2.