Our baseball RPI is now 110. Why are we playing Grambling, UAPB, etc. instead of OU , OSU, Memphis ? It seems we have dumbed down our schedule just as we did in basket ball. IT also causes our midweek attendance to stink. Thoughts?
Yeah those games are killing our RPI
We will be fine we just keep taking care of business in the SEC though
Midweek attendance always sucks unless we somehow get a top-5 team in here on a Tuesday, and that hasn’t happened in a few years. The tickets are basically all sold anyway, it’s just how many get used. But we’re reporting number of tickets sold to the NCAA (last night was 8,959).
Dave likes being able to schedule the in-state teams because it makes his scheduling easier. He’s the one who pushed HY to bend the ironclad no-in-state-games rule. They’ll all agree to come to BWS so he doesn’t have to make a midweek trip for a return game at Norman or Stillwater.
By the way, Memphis’ RPI is exactly 10 spots above UCA’s this morning and well below UALR’s, so adding Tiger High would not be an improvement.
It’s possible that some year the crappy schedule will cost us a regional or a super, and maybe that will force Dave to re-evaluate. But until then…
Dave has a problem finding teams that are willing to come to Fayetteville for series and (even more) for mid-week games. One of the reasons that he likes the in-state competition is that they are willing to come.
Playing the SEC West takes care of the RPI.
There are always going to be games like last night’s on the schedule. You have to play those types of games to fill a 56-game schedule, especially with all the home dates the Razorbacks want to have.
I’ll also add that I’ve been told Arkansas tried to get Nebraska to play a midweek series this year and it did not work out. Nebraska was supposed to come here in March 2021, but could not when the Big Ten made all of the teams play a conference-only schedule. I’m not sure if it will ever get rescheduled.
On the attendance: The UAPB games were not going to have a real high attendance either way, but the schedule change hurt attendance yesterday. That was supposed to be a 6:30 p.m. first pitch. There are not a lot of ticket holders who are going to take off work to go a game against UAPB in the middle of the afternoon.
People view midweek games in a completely different way than they view conference games. I rarely expect large crowds for midweek games.
Marty, do we pay visiting teams to come, like football. Never thought of that before.
Yes, although it might take half a decade or longer for baseball guarantees to reach the total of one nonconference football game.
My sense was that there was a small guarantee which might cover the cost of the bus ride up, meals and maybe one night in a hotel. Or might not even cover it. UCA and UAPB probably didn’t even do a hotel. UALR probably did for that two-night series.
UAPB likely benefited from the schedule change to the doubleheader. Play the two 7 inning games on Tuesday then take the 3.5 hour bus trip home and avoid the hotel and extra meals costs.
With UCA, an easy 2 hour bus trip up that morning and back following the game.
UA can offer less of a guarantee and the in state teams still jump on it, getting the opportunity and exposure of playing at Baum and also having a much more adjustable travel schedule than the teams that might travel in from out of state. And those teams being adaptable with their travel schedule and agreeing to change to 7 inning games, etc., benefits DVH as well.
I’ve been wondering what we paid these low-level teams to come to BWS. I assume we pay them all the same, but that might not be the case. Matt, do you know how much we paid or will pay UAPB, UALR, UCA, & ASU to come to Baum?
What kind of arrangement do we have with Dickey Stephens for games in NLR? Will we pay UCA a portion of the gate, a flat amount?
I should have taken a picture at the start of the first game. The stands were as empty as any game that I can remember, with the exception of a game when the stands were covered in snow. My section and perhaps two others were cleared. There were only a small handful of us there.
It was easy to tell from the TV it was almost empty. However, given the time change & it being a Tuesday afternoon, I’m not too surprised. Looked like a bit better crowd for the second game. Besides, it was UAPB. Nobody expected much of a challenge.
UAPB is #297 of 301 in ELO. I think they started 9 freshmen. Good grief they were bad.
We’ve been told time after time, playing the in state schools is great for baseball in the state.
That’s our SOS, not our RPI. But I get your point…low SOS leads to lower RPI (which currently stands at 37th according to Warren Nolan’s estimation algorithm).
I will say that’s a concern as far as hosting a Super Regional; if we take care of business (by which I mean win 18 or more SEC games), we should end up with a better RPI and probably are in good shape for a Regional. To get consideration for a top 8 “National Seed”, we probably need to win 20 or more SEC games and win the SEC West. Those are still within sight, but more of a challenge than it probably appeared to be 2 or 3 weeks ago.
What’s good about our remaining schedule is also “bad” from an RPI perspective. Most of our more challenging series are at home, which gives us a better chance of winning, but does not help RPI as much as winning series on the road. Bottom line, looking at it from today - if we want to end our season in Omaha, we’re likely going to have to earn that right in a Super on the road.
That’s where I disagree with DVH. He thinks intrastate play will increase interest in the high schools. I think the thing that will increase interest in baseball is continued high levels of success by the Razorbacks. That’s true in other sports, too. When the hogs got good in basketball in the late 70’s, interest in his basketball picked up. We don’t need to play other instate teams to improve HS baseball. Maybe if asu or UAPB make the CWS they’ll impact HS baseball. Losing to us won’t do it.
Being successful at a high level such as CWS appearances drive interest. High drama matchups vs. established SEC powers drives interest.
These instate games aren’t accomplishing anything for our program in my opinion. Ask yourself which of the following excite more people.
- A weekend series vs LSU, MSU, or Tennessee.
- A series vs in state team.
You need to have both
It’s necessary to have mower level competition in midweek, it’s how you develop younger pitchers and position players.
Whether it’s in state opponent or not to me makes no difference
We end up winning the SEC West we will get a chance to host a regional and a super regional. The competiveness of the division I believe will supersede the non-competitive midweek games, would make no sense if it did not.