Auburn hears the good news it has made its 19th NCAA Regional
By Charles Goldberg
Auburn is headed to Tallahassee to play in an NCAA baseball regional this week -- as if there would be any other place in the world the Tigers would play.
It'll be Auburn's seventh trip to Tallahassee to play in a regional, though it's the first time for the Tigers to play there since 2005 and the first regional for Auburn to play anywhere since 2010.
Coach Sunny Golloway, in his second year at Auburn, said he welcomed post-season play, welcomed the chance to play College of Charleston in Friday's 11 a.m. regional opener, and liked the idea of making his 15th trip to an NCAA Regional in the last 17 years.
"And it's one we probably go in looser," he said. "Remember, we were picked 14th in this league, and we finished as one of seven teams going to the NCAA Tournament."
Golloway said Auburn sees a big opportunity.
"Our expectations are great. Outside expectations aren't," he said. "We can go ahead and do some things. We have the luxury of changing some things up and rolling the dice."
Auburn, making its 19th appearance in an NCAA Regional, has a 35-22 record this season, and surely impressed the NCAA Selection Committee with its national 22 RPI. The Tigers are the No. 3 seed in the regional, giving way to No. 1 seed Florida State, which is 41-9 and ranked 10th nationally in the USA Today coaches poll; and to No. 2 seed College of Charleston, which is 43-13 and ranked 15th nationally. No. 4 seed Mercer is 35-21.
Your complete NCAA baseball bracket is here.
Golloway played in close to the vest after the NCAA Selection Show officially told the Tigers they were going. He said he might start Cole Lipscomb in Friday's opener. Or he might start Rocky McCord. He even threw out the injured Keegan Thompson's name.
"He wants to throw the baseball," Golloway said.
Golloway said he had scouted some of the likely opposition in some of the regions where Auburn might end up, just in case. He said he talked to "pretty smart baseball guys" that had played those teams, and he felt he had a good plan in the works heading to the weekend.
"We're excited to be playing this time of year," he said.
Charles Goldberg is a Senior Writer at AuburnTigers.com. Follow him on Twitter: Follow @AUGoldMine