USF baseball could possibly host NCAA regional

By Josh Fiallo, Sports Editor
On May 17, 2017

USF is currently tied for first place in the AAC and is looking to host a regional. SPECIAL TO THE ORACLE

After a historic 20-1 start to the regular season, the Bulls came back down to earth once conference play started, but are still in the race to host an NCAA regional.

USF is a combined 5-0 against No. 5 Florida, No. 25 UCF and No. 28 Florida State, all of which are possible competition in the Bulls’ hunt to host an NCAA regional series.

There are 64 teams selected for the NCAA tournament, with 16 schools hosting. 

“At the end of the day, if USF wins either the regular season or conference tournament championship for the American, then unless some of the other teams they’re competing against just kind of go crazy, I think they would be a host,” ESPN college baseball analyst Mike Rooney said last week.

As of right now, the Bulls have a chance at winning both titles.

The Bulls are currently 39-12 and are tied atop the AAC with UCF and Houston.

All three teams are 13-8 in the conference. However, UConn is fresh off a series win against the Bulls and currently one game behind with a conference record of 12-9. 

All four teams have three conference games remaining in their regular-season, including a three-game series this weekend against UCF in Orlando for the Bulls.

Pending how the weekend plays out, the Bulls could enter the conference tournament as high as the No. 1 seed, or as low as the No. 5 seed.

Winning the regular-season AAC title would surely help the Bulls’ chances of hosting an NCAA regional, although it’s not completely necessary. 

“Right now, the RPI and metrics are good,” said Kendall Rogers from d1baseball.com. “And if USF finishes the regular season on a strong note and wins that (AAC) regular-season title, it would have a very, very good case for a host spot.”

In order to finish as regular-season champs, the Bulls will have to win at least two out of three games against the Knights this weekend, finish with a better conference record than UConn’s and have a record that at least ties Houston’s.

A three-way tie between Houston, USF and UConn would lead to a tiebreaker formula that would grant first place to whatever team has the best record against whoever is fourth in the conference. 

If that team is UCF, the Bulls finish No. 1. 

If that team is Tulane, currently fourth, however, USF would fall to No. 2 because of USF’s 1-2 record against the Green Wave this season.

The AAC tournament will be from May 23-28 at Spectrum Field in Clearwater. 

The Bulls will find out their regional fate at noon on May 29 in the Division I Baseball Selection Show that will be aired on ESPNU.

 

USF softball falls short of NCAA tournament birth

 

For just the second time in the past six seasons, USF softball will not be in the NCAA tournament.

The Bulls were left out of the NCAA’s selection show that aired late Sunday night, despite finishing the regular season ranked No. 54 in the RPI rankings

Already a borderline team to make the NCAA tournament, the fourth seeded Bulls suffered a major blow in the first round of the AAC tournament when they lost to No. 5-seeded Memphis 7-0.

Before the loss to Memphis, USF softball made it past the first round of the AAC tournament every year since joining the American in 2013.

The Bulls finished with a winning record of 32-24 despite the surprise removal of 2016 AAC player of the year Juli Weber in January, in addition to countless injuries to starters throughout the season. 

 

Ex USF DE LaDarrius Jackson arrested for second time within the month

 

For the second time in a 10-day span, former USF football player LaDarrius Jackson has been charged with forcing a woman to have sex.

Jackson’s latest arrest stemmed from an incident that occurred on March 27 in an apartment near USF’s Tampa campus. According to The Tampa Bay Times, Jackson regularly did his laundry at the alleged victim’s apartment. 

The victim of the second attack was allegedly in her bathroom putting things away when Jackson began to remove his clothes. Then, blocking the doorway, allegedly asked her numerous times to shower with him.

When the women wouldn’t comply with his requests, 6-foot-4 Jackson allegedly continued to block the door telling her, “Nobody is going anywhere,” according to the arrest report.

Jackson then proceeded to force the woman to have sex with him as a “going-away present,” according to the arrest report. 

After forcing her to have sex, the women told investigators that Jackson stayed to finish his laundry, and then forced her to drive to Target to take an emergency contraceptive in his presence.

Jackson was suspended from the football team immediately following his May 1 arrest and has since been removed by coach Charlie Strong following his second arrest on May 10.

Jackson, who recorded three tackles in total last season for USF, was released less than an hour after his second arrest from the Hillsborough County Jail on a $9,500 bond the afternoon of May 10. This is the same bond price from his first arrests charges.

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