After being canceled last year due to the CVOVID-19 pandemic, the eight-team 2021 College World Series field is set ahead of the first pitch on Saturday, June 19, in Omaha, Nebraska. Stanford will face North Carolina State to kick-off the weekend at 2 p.m. EST on ESPN.
Here is everything you need to know to watch and bet on the College World Series. All odds courtesy of DraftKings (NASDAQ: DKNG)
Vanderbilt enters the College World Series as the favorite to win. Led by superstar pitchers Kumar Rocker and Jack Leiter, the Commodores pitching is lights-out. Rocker posted a 13-3 record and 2.46 ERA while Leiter went 10-3 with a 2.16 ERA. Both pitchers are projected to be top-5 picks in the upcoming MLB Draft.
In 2019, Vanderbilt beat Michigan to win the World Series and is looking to be the first team to repeat as winners in 10 years.
Texas is making its 37th CWS appearance, by far the most in college baseball history. They hold all sorts of CWS records with 85 wins and 146 games to go with the second-most titles at six.
This season, Texas defeated South Florida to advance to Omaha and is the no. 2 team in the country on the back of the best team ERA in the country at 2.89. Starter Ty Madden has been dominant, striking out 119 batters and holding a 2.41 ERA. The Longhorns are strong on offense as well and they have outscored opponents 49-12 in five playoff games.
No. 3-ranked Tennessee defeated SEC rival LSU in the Super Regional to advance to its first College World Series since 2005. The Volunteers pitching staff emerged down the stretch with good performances from both the rotation and the bullpen. Offensively, Tennessee boasts power hitters with Luc Lipcius and Jordan Beck, as well as speed and guys who get on base.
Arizona trounced Ole Miss 16-3 in the rubber match of their super regional matchup to advance. The Wildcats boast a .329 team batting average and average 8.6 runs per game. Their high-flying offense hasn’t been backed up with stellar pitching as the team ERA is 4.43.
A game-one matchup against Vanderbilt’s pitching staff will be intriguing to say the least, but Arizona will need better pitching to make a deep run.
Mississippi State (+650)
Mississippi State has now made three consecutive appearances in Omaha, the longest streak in the country. Starter Will Bednar has emerged as a potential first-round pick atop the Bulldogs rotation, posting a 7-1 record and 3.53 ERA with a lot of strikeouts. With a strong lineup, led by star right fielder Tanner Allen, and a solid pitching staff behind Bednar, Mississippi State has the parts to make some noise in Omaha.
Stanford swept Texas Tech in Lubbock to win their super regional. The Cardinal are now in their first World Series since 2008 and have been led by center fielder Brock Jones. He has posted a slash line of .302/.452/.620 while clubbing 16 home runs. He hit three home runs in the final super regional game as well.
Starter Brendan Beck is the ace of the pitching staff, going 9-1 with a 2.96 ERA
Virginia has the worst record out of the final eight at 34-25, but is hot as of late and could be a spoiler against the top teams. They lost the first game of their super regional against Dallas Baptist before winning the final two Virginia is not a flashy team like many others still alive for the national championship, but they have received solid contributions across the board on offense and from the pitching staff
North Carolina State (+1200))
NC State pulled off the biggest upset of the tournament by defeating no. 1-ranked Arkansas in the super regional. Arkansas finished the year 50-13 and dominated in the SEC. Now, the Wolfpack enter the CWS with the longest odds to win, but have faced adversity all season long.
They started off poorly in ACC play and got destroyed 21-2 in game one against the Razorbacks. NC State has a dangerous offense with four starters batting over .300 and six hitters with double-digit home runs. Pitching has been the team’s biggest issue with a 5.12 ERA, but recent play has given the Wolfpack momentum to turn more heads in Omaha.
Full 2021 College World Series Schedule
Saturday, June 19
Game 1: Stanford vs. NC State | 2 pm | ESPN
Game 2: Vanderbilt vs. Arizona | 7 pm | ESPN
Sunday, June 20
Game 3: Tennessee vs. Virginia | 2 pm | ESPN2
Game 4: Texas vs. Mississippi State | 7 pm | ESPN2
Monday, June 21
Game 5: Game 1 loser vs. Game 2 loser | 2 pm | ESPNU
Game 6: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner | 7 pm | ESPN
Tuesday, June 22
Game 7: Game 3 loser vs. Game 4 loser | 2 pm | ESPNU
Game 8: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner | 7 pm | ESPN2
Wednesday, June 23
Game 9: 7 pm | ESPN
Thursday, June 24
Game 10: 7 pm | ESPN2
Friday, June 25
Game 11: 2 pm | ESPN2
Game 12: 7 pm | ESPN
Saturday, June 26
Game 13: 2 pm | ESPN (if necessary)
Game 14: 7 pm | ESPN2 (if necessary)
CWS Finals (Best-of-3 series)
Game 1: 7 pm | Monday, June 28 | ESPN2
Game 2: 7 pm | Tuesday, June 29 | ESPN
Game 3: 7 pm, Wednesday, June 30 | ESPN2 (if necessary)
Photo: TD Ameritrade Park hosting the 2019 College World Series Final
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