Abram - "Afraid it's too little too late. With a 21-19 record at this point in the season it'd be surprising to make the tournament"
Jeff - "If they beat Tech and Baylor and don't get swept by TCU I bet they're in"
Abram - "Those are some massive ifs. And I think even that just gets them on the bubble"
Abram and I exchanged the above texts on Sunday night. My initial reaction was to be dismissive of Abram's (usually massively uninformed) opinion. I decided to give this one a deeper look though and see what will it take for Texas baseball to avoid missing their third postseason in four years.
The Texas Longhorns needed a sweep of KU and missed it by "thismuch" with a brutal loss on Saturday. They got a nice series victory instead which , without context, was a good road victory over a team that just beat Oklahoma State. Coming on the heels of a loss to Sam Houston State it may be too little too late.
The Horns are 21-19 now. Beat Texas State and they're 22-19 with 11 games to go. Texas is going to end with a top notch SoS which will help boost the RPI. Let's assume midweek wins over Prairie View A&M and another against Texas State. That's 24 wins.
Realistically, Texas is going to need a minimum of 32 or 33 wins to make the NCAA tournament. Stanford made it in 2014 with a 30-23 record and one of the best SoS in the country. Texas A&M was 33-24 a year ago and one of the last four teams in thanks to a top 20 SoS.
With this in mind, what does the road look like for Texas to make the postseason? Well, the Horns will need to avoid being swept by TCU plain and simple. A series win will be lagniappe but the Horned Frogs are really good and Texas hasn't actually beaten a really good opponent in a series all season.
A 2-2 week this week would put Texas at 23-21 with 8 to play. If Texas wins both of the remaining midweek games after this week and merely takes two of three from Tech and Baylor then the Horns will stand at 29-23 entering the Big 12 tournament. Assuming they don't win the tournament, Texas would probably need 3 or 4 wins to stand a realistic chance at a 3-seed in the NCAA tournament.
Things get easier if Texas can beat TCU or sweep one of Tech/Baylor.
Of course IF Texas makes the postseason there's probably a good chance they get placed in College Station where the Texas A&M wrecking ball might demolish the Horns.
I'd still say it's a 50/50 shot that Texas will make the NCAA tournament this season. If the bats woke up on Sunday and it wasn't an aberration then the odds might be good.
That journey starts tonight against Texas State. First pitch is at 6 PM and this'll be your open thread.