"Agreed, and D2 this year is also implementing the Super Regional format like D1.  So teams making it to Cary, NC for the CWS have a more demanding road to get there.  Pitching depth will definitely be tested."

I watched an Atlantic region game yesterday, went 18 innings... that will test some pitching depth. 6th reliever for MU threw 8 scoreless innings with 12K, worked out of 3 bases loaded jams to earn the win.

Loser of the game plays at 11:00 today, winner gets a big rest ... game at 3:00

Reducing rosters to 25 players for post season really comes into play ,...... probably one of the worst conversations a coach has to have all year is to tell players they are being left off of the roster.

 

 

mmm1531 posted:

Is that 25-man limit for D2 only or D1 as well?

 

I think D1 allows 27, D2 and D3 limited to 25....  I could be wrong though...

the reason I always heard was because NCAA is footing the travel bill and will only pay for the listed numbers.

Yes, I believe that is correct.  When my son played for WSSU in 2015 and the regional championship was at Erie, PA, the NCAA covered the team's travel expenses (airfare, hotel, food), but the limit was 25.   Wasn't a big problem as WSSU only had 28 on the roster at the beginning of the season and by playoff time the roster was at or close to the cutoff.

the Tampa team is loaded. four players drafted this year, multiple D1 transfers. They are tough to beat.

I watched the first MU- Tampa game. Mercyhurst pitcher ( drafted in 19th rnd.) dominated them through 7. He ran out of gas in 8th and ended up losing 4-2. 

Mercyhurst has been on a great run, 3 WS appearances in last 5 years, back to back appearances with a final four finish this year. Two losses to Tampa this year.

mmm1531 posted:

I watched the first MU- Tampa game. Mercyhurst pitcher ( drafted in 19th rnd.) dominated them through 7. He ran out of gas in 8th and ended up losing 4-2. 

Mercyhurst has been on a great run, 3 WS appearances in last 5 years, back to back appearances with a final four finish this year. Two losses to Tampa this year.

How does Merceyhurst attract top D2 talent to Erie PA? Their roster looks like mostly PA, NY and OH kids. Just a winning culture?

MU attends AC tryouts in PA and NY, did not receive an offer for the AC team. The best of the best of the best in that region are there.

(No secret that they piggy back off of MLB Scouts.) They don’t have the travel budget for recruiting 

Son attended AC tryout in Jr year and received legit offers from 4 great programs (no D1 in attendance) .

Get to the AC 

MidAtlanticDad posted:
mmm1531 posted:

I watched the first MU- Tampa game. Mercyhurst pitcher ( drafted in 19th rnd.) dominated them through 7. He ran out of gas in 8th and ended up losing 4-2. 

Mercyhurst has been on a great run, 3 WS appearances in last 5 years, back to back appearances with a final four finish this year. Two losses to Tampa this year.

How does Merceyhurst attract top D2 talent to Erie PA? Their roster looks like mostly PA, NY and OH kids. Just a winning culture?

Mid, my son will attend Mercyhurst next year and will play baseball.  Yes, their roster is almost entirely PA, NY and Ohio players.  We are new to the program, but I think Coach Spano is just known as having a winning program and being a great coach.  So I suspect it is mostly due to the winning culture as you suggest.  It seems he has connections that feed him a lot of DI tweener type players who missed out on DI offers - although I suppose just about every DII program could say that!  Another factor is that there are not a lot of DI baseball programs in Western PA or NY, so perhaps some of the student athletes who prefer to stay somewhat closer to home are naturally drawn to the program as it is an upper level DII program?  Can't say for sure but that has been my belief.  They certainly do not enroll for the weather LOL!

Our son chose MU because it was the best academic and athletic fit, he received reasonable academic and athletic aid, and it is reasonably close to home (2 hours from Ctown!).  He's very excited about the opportunity.

Mercyhurst also gets a few JUCO and DI transfers - although nowhere near the number that Tampa has!!

FWIW, Hurst had two (2) pitchers drafted this year - Garbee (19th Round, Reds) and Minnick (23rd Round, Yankees). 

The stream announcer on the Tampa-UCSD game commented that 23 of 25 players on Tampa's playoff roster were transfers.  Hard to verify since the rosters on the CWS site had the full 35 man rosters for the teams, not the playoff 25.  But I did notice some of the kids on the team are now on their third school.  More D1 dropdowns than any school's roster that I looked at this year. 

That approach has obviously worked very well for that coach and program, as they have been the most dominant D2 program over the past 20 years.  Kids who are not getting playing time in D1 schools are bound to be attracted to Tampa if they are thinking about transferring.  And there is a better chance they could get drafted seeing playing time at Tampa versus riding the pine at an SEC school. 

I get why Tampa's strategy works so well with a great coach who can attract the right talent.  But obviously it is not an option for a lot of D2 programs that emphasize academics and have high admission standards for transfer acceptance.  And it is bound to be a different experience for the players in that kind of revolving door program versus kids who spend 3-4 years at a school with many of the same teammates.  Just another example that college baseball teams come in all shapes and sizes.

Backstop22 posted:

The stream announcer on the Tampa-UCSD game commented that 23 of 25 players on Tampa's playoff roster were transfers.  Hard to verify since the rosters on the CWS site had the full 35 man rosters for the teams, not the playoff 25.  But I did notice some of the kids on the team are now on their third school.  More D1 dropdowns than any school's roster that I looked at this year. 

That approach has obviously worked very well for that coach and program, as they have been the most dominant D2 program over the past 20 years.  Kids who are not getting playing time in D1 schools are bound to be attracted to Tampa if they are thinking about transferring.  And there is a better chance they could get drafted seeing playing time at Tampa versus riding the pine at an SEC school. 

I get why Tampa's strategy works so well with a great coach who can attract the right talent.  But obviously it is not an option for a lot of D2 programs that emphasize academics and have high admission standards for transfer acceptance.  And it is bound to be a different experience for the players in that kind of revolving door program versus kids who spend 3-4 years at a school with many of the same teammates.  Just another example that college baseball teams come in all shapes and sizes.

Well said.  Personally I am not a big fan of the Tampa approach, as it seems rather mercenary to have almost the entire roster of transfers.  It obviously works though (DII Champs) and is permitted under NCAA rules.  

Florida is Florida and there are many good players.

I've heard that Tampa is one of the top Universities in the STATE.

It makes sense for a student athlete and his family to save $$ by attending Tampa U for 1 or 2 years and receiving their degree.

The plus is getting the playing time.

Sounds like a win win

If you are not familiar, you should read the HC's bio...  WILDLY successful for a sustained period of time.  I get the thoughts on the mercenary approach but it's still not easy to successfully recruit that type of player and then get the teams to gel year after year....  five national titles since 2006, several more regional titles and another year they didn't win it all, they broke the NCAA record for winning %.

https://www.tampaspartans.com/...es/Urso_Joe?view=bio

Of course it helps to have the starting line... "yeah, come and live in/go to school in Tampa for the winter... we win regional and national titles all the time".  But that consistent winning has been hard earned.   A major tip of the cap to the guy. 

 

Very impressive bio and a great coach!  I'm sure it's hard earned and well deserved.  Like you say, it's not easy to induce transfers and get the teams to gel, etc.

To me the aspiration/ideal would be to recruit, develop within and keep guys all 4 yrs. (unless drafted earlier).  But that's probably naive and certainly is not consistent with the reality of how NCAA athletics work now.  Transfers certainly can be a win-win and there's nothing wrong with it on a case by case basis.  (Heck my son may end up transferring who knows what the future may bring?)  I can't exactly put my finger on it, but seeing almost the entire playoff roster as transfers just makes me wonder is that how things are supposed to work?  Maybe it's no biggie - they found a good formula and have a great academic school and athletics and it's a win win.

Lots of D2 and NAIA schools in particular rely heavily on transfers, whether JC, drop-down or other.   Certainly not all but plenty.  I have always found it interesting... it seems to be either prevalent or non-existent in pockets, geographically and among conferences.  Of course, the academic and religious slant are big factors.  The Tampa guy appears to fully maximize the transfer pipeline, along with also taking advantage of an IMG connection (and, undoubtedly, location).  Looks like he has quite the system.  

Most of the more competitive schools in son's conference, located mostly in the Ohio River Basin, rely heavily on JC transfers, many from California or Florida. 

Interestingly, and also not surprising, this year's NAIA Champ Tennessee Wesleyan has much the same model... most contributing players are transfers across JC and multiple other levels. This, too, is a program that is a perrenial winner, taking the conference crown ten of the last eleven years.  The coach there has earned multiple conference, regional and NAIA Coach of the Year awards.

No argument from me.  The rules allow the revolving door of transfers and roster churn, and it is true that there are a lot of teams in D2 in particular that recruit transfers and JUCO players.  It is a common landing spot for kids who went JUCO hoping to attract D1 interest but were not quite good enough to do so.  Several of the CCAA schools in California attempt to model the Tampa approach but they are not getting as many D1 dropdowns as Tampa does and aren't as successful because they compete against each other for the same players wanting to stay in California.  Heck, there is a D3 in SoCal that is also known to be quite cut throat with his roster and yet talented kids still gravitate there hoping they survive.

Again, kudos to Tampa coach for being so consistently good at turning over his roster and succeeding every year in getting the team to come together (kinda like the John Calipari equivalent).  It is a different college experience, and players going to Tampa should be well aware of how it works.  But we can all pretty much chalk them into the CWS in Cary, NC next year as well.

Yes good point - as much as that reputation and type of program can help get DI and JUCO transfers, it could also have a dampening effect on securing HS recruits.  And they may well be fine with that...  Different environments as you say.

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