College baseball is a fickle being. The Tennessee Vols were dominant all regular season long in the SEC. They were the undoubtedly top team in the country entering the national tournament. Meanwhile, the Ole Miss Rebels snuck in as the final team in the field. Many thought they shouldn’t have even been in there. Alas, they were playing their best ball as the tournament began.
A month later, the Vols didn’t make it past Super Regionals, and Ole Miss is hoisting the trophy as national champions. Not to mention, Oklahoma was the other team in the College World Series finals. Those are two teams that the Vols dominated in the regular season.
— Vol Report (@AllVolReport) June 27, 2022
Tennessee went undefeated against the Rebels and Sooners. They held Oklahoma scoreless in their one matchup with them. The series versus Ole Miss wasn’t very competitive. The Vols won by scores of 12-1, 10-3, and 4-3. Oh, how the tables turn in just a couple of months in college baseball.
Does it actually matter in the end? Not really. It just adds insult to injury for the Vols and their fan base. They all know that they had fared well against the teams that made it to the stage they expected to get to by season’s end. Instead, Notre Dame took care of them in Super Regionals to prevent a trip to the CWS for the Vols. They didn’t even get the shot to prove that the matchups earlier in the season against Oklahoma and Ole Miss were no fluke.
At the end of the day, that’s college baseball. In many cases, “what if?” is the ultimate mantra of the sport. Many teams feel that way when their season ends, especially clubs as dominant as the Vols in the regular season.
The tournament is humbling and unpredictable for most teams, especially the number one overall seed.