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The NCAA Division I is a US baseball tournament where Division I College Baseball teams participate. After primary selection, eight champion teams decided from previous Regional and Super Regionals, meet for the NCAA College World Series (CWS) in Omaha, Nebraska, where the games have taken place since 1950. This tournament differs from a single-elimination style NCAA basketball tournament. Let us know more detail about ‘How Do NCAA Baseball Regionals Work?’.
How Do NCAA Baseball Regionals Work?
NCAA Division I Baseball Tournament is a four-stage competition. In the first stage, the Regionals are held in 16 national locations with four teams ranked as national seeds from 1 to 4. The team that is rated 1 in each place hosts the matches.
NCAA Division I Baseball Tournament
The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) hosts a baseball tournament for Division I colleges in the US since 1947. And the last two rounds of the tournament have been taking place in the same stadium of TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha, Nebraska since 1950.
The tournament consists of four rounds – Regionals, Super Regionals, College World Series, and Final. All Division I schools compete to get a place on the list of 64 teams that go to play regionals. Since 2014, 31 teams are chosen by automatic berth and 33 from at-large bids. The preparation for the games starts in May. First, 16 teams are seeded which gives them the advantage of hosting the game and more popularity.
64 teams play in 16 locations in a double-elimination format in Regionals. Each Regional champion goes to play in the Super Regionals. In the second round, three games are played between two Regional champions. The eight best-of-three then go to Omaha, Nebraska for the CWS. Then another double elimination followed by a best-of-three round decides the national champion of the CWS.
NCAA Baseball Regionals In Detail
The Regionals is the first step of the NCAA baseball tournament. 64 teams are selected from all over the US and divided into 16 four-team brackets. One team from each group is nominated as a ‘national seed.’ All teams bid to be seeded but the schools which have the proper facility to host the game win the bid. They get the home-ground advantage.
The Regional games are played in a double-elimination format. That means if a team loses two games, they get eliminated. In the first two games, the no. 1 plays with no. 4 and no. 2 with no. 3 from each locale. Next, the winners of the two games play against each other. And in the elimination bracket, the losers play. Two more games are played before the Regional Champion is decided.
A total of six games are played in the Regional round in each locale. The Regional winner goes to the next round i.e., the Super Regionals.
How To Watch NCAA Division I Regionals?
The NCAA Baseball tournament is a big sports occasion in the US, So, you can watch it on many cable channels as well as on online streaming platforms. ESPN owns the broadcasting rights to the games. So you can watch all the games from the Regionals to the final on ESPN, ESPN+, ESPN1, ESPN2, ESPNU, etc.
You can watch the games online on streaming platforms like
- DirecTV with its ‘Choice’ plan. It has all the necessary sports channels.
- ESPN app. It has all ESPN channels except ESPN+ for free.
- Fubo TV with its pro plan of $69.99 a month.
- Sling TV with its ‘Sports Extra’ package. It has all ESPN channels.
- Hulu Live TV, YouTube TV, etc.
Other than ESPN, SEC Network, ACC, and LongHorn Network stream all the Regional, Super Regional, and Men’s College World Series (MCWS) games.
Now We’ve learnt about ‘How Do NCAA Baseball Regionals Work?’, Understanding the NCAA baseball tournament can be a bit tricky as they are not in a straightforward single-elimination format like the NCAA basketball tournament or NFL playoffs. Rather, the Regionals are double-elimination, Super Regionals are best-of-three, and the College World Series (CWS) is a mix of the two. But once you figure out the process, you can join the fan group of CWS and enjoy the game to the fullest.
- Which radio station broadcasts the matches in Omaha, Nebraska?
In Omaha, Nebraska, the Westwood One channel on 1620 broadcasts all games of the CWS.
- Who can host a Super Regional?
The top eight teams among the 16 national seeds can automatically host a Super Regional if they go to the next round. In absence of a national seed, the next higher-seeded team entering the Super Regionals can host the game. If both teams have the same seeding, the authority conducts a tiebreaker round to decide the hosting team.
- How a college is considered Division I?
An institution has to sponsor at least seven sports in both men’s and women’s categories (or six men’s and eight women’s) with two teams for each sport for both genders. Teams of both genders have to participate in each season.
- Which team has the most titles at NCAA CWS?
The University of Southern California (USC) has won the NCAA MCWS title 12 times, the highest in NCAA CWS history.