January 24, 2013
Tulane baseball coach Rick Jones has tweaked his scheduling philosophy
Before the first swing of preseason baseball practice this Friday, Tulane already is in better position to make an NCAA regional than it was a year ago at this time.
The reason is simple. After getting clarification from the NCAA about the why the Green Wave stayed home for the postseason in 2012, coach Rick Jones adjusted the schedule to make it more RPI-friendly.
The way the current selection committee picks at-large teams, Tulane's high finish in Conference USA (tied for third, three spots ahead of regional participant East Carolina) did not help as much as its weak non-conference schedule hurt (12 games against teams that finished out of the RPI top 235 according to WarrenNolan.com).
"I called the NCAA and I got the RPI people on the phone," Jones said. "I said I'm so tired of this, just tell me what I have to do. They said, 'coach, there's no exact science, but beat people who are going to beat people.' Well, the only thing you can go on is past history."
Although not totally satisfied with that explanation, Jones made a few notable changes. For the first time since 2006, when it began the year in the Houston College Classic against TCU, Texas Tech and Texas, Tulane will open on the road.
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