As I’ve said before, the term “regional” is becoming outdated.

This is the second time in two postseasons that Arkansas will host two teams from more than 1,000 miles away. It is the first time Arkansas has hosted a regional without a team from a border state.

Looking through the bracket, about half the sites have a true regional feel this year.

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That is what happens when one region dominates the sport.

Used to be the West could seriously hold its own against the Southeast (in which I include the ACC). There would be several regionals out west, at Fullerton or Long Beach or both in addition to Pac-12 teams, and of course Fullerton, Stanford, USC, Arizona, AZ State and the Molesters have won multiple titles. Not that way any more, it seems. But the Big 12 has gotten weak too. No Little Dozen team has won since Texass in 2005.

What happened to those west coast power houses?

Probably many of the top echelon of high school players now gravitate toward the SEC to play for the best against the best.

It used to be that the good players gravitated to the Southwest. The weather was such that they could play more. At one time those teams were allowed to start their seasons in January, IIRC. But then the NCAA instituted a universal start date.

The facilities race added another dimension. Those West coast powerhouses didn’t keep up. There are too many diversions in their areas for them to draw like most of the SEC. In Tempe, for example, they have pro baseball, football, and basketball in nearby Phoenix. Their college baseball team gets next to no coverage.

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Sports, in general (not just baseball) in all the California schools seem to be sliding.

Oh I don’t know. UCLA basketball seems to be in pretty good shape.

I think there is still good West Coast baseball. I don’t think the teams that play are viewed equally by the selection committee, but teams like UCLA, Oregon State, Fullerton and Arizona seem to play well when they make the tournament.

There is less media exposure and the geography — coupled with relatively small budgets — doesn’t create a lot of opportunities for West Coast teams to play or recruit other parts of the country. It seems like West Coast teams are kind of forgotten about until the postseason.

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Many public-school D1 programs in California outside of those in the PAC-12 only offer scholarships (full or partial) based on in-state tuition rates due to program finances. Hence, those schools are hampered in recruiting out-of-state recruits. California’s natural geographic isolation from other populated areas of the country doesn’t help either.

High school baseball is still strong in California. I think the west coast in general is more a pro sports area.

UCLA’s roster is made up entirely of Californians.

Stanford baseball has some out-of-staters but is majority Californian.

Pro baseball draft always is loaded with California kids.

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