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Big 12 Baseball Announces Championship Changes
November 23, 2005

DALLAS, Texas - The Big 12 Conference announced the implementation of a two-division, pool play format for its Phillips 66 Big 12 Conference Baseball Championship on Tuesday. 

Previously, the Championship was conducted as a double-elimination tournament.  Under the new format, as approved by the conference's head coaches, each of the eight teams competing is guaranteed a minimum of three games.

Results from the league's 27-game round-robin conference schedule will determine the eight seeds for the Championship.  Seeds 2, 3, 6 and 7 will compete in pool play on one side of the bracket, while seeds 1, 4, 5 and 8 play in the other. The two teams with the best record within their bracket will advance to the Championship game, with the winner earning the Big 12's automatic berth into the NCAA Championship.  Head-to-head competition will break ties within each bracket.  In the event of more than two teams being tied for the top spot within a bracket, the highest seeded team will advance to Sunday's winner-take-all Championship game.

"The change in format allows our teams to better prepare themselves for the NCAA post-season," said associate commissioner Dru Hancock. "It gives coaches greater flexibility in managing their pitching staffs and rewards the teams that have been most successful during the regular season."

"The new format assures us of quality night games when fans, Big 12 students and children in school have their best opportunity of attending the tournament," said Oklahoma All Sports Association Executive Director Tim Brassfield. "It is a very fair means of competition, and the teams and student-athletes will be able to experience both the ambience of the Oklahoma City area and additional games than in past Phillips 66 Big 12 championships."

In 2006 the Phillips 66 Big 12 Baseball Championship will surpass the one million mark in attendance. The first nine Championships have combined to attract 967,601 fans.  This season's Championship will be held in Oklahoma City for the eighth time.  For ticket information contact The Oklahoma City All Sports Association at (405) 236-5000.

Start times for this season's Championship are as follows:

Wed., May 24
Game 1: 10 a.m. - Teams TBD
Game 2: 1 p.m. - Teams TBD
Game 3: 5 p.m. - Teams TBD
Game 4: 8 p.m. - Teams TBD

Thurs., May 25
Game 5: 4:30 p.m. - Teams TBD
Game 6: 7:30 p.m. - Teams TBD

Fri., May 26
Game 7: 4:30 p.m. - Teams TBD
Game 8: 7:30 p.m. - Teams TBD

Sat., May 27
Game 9: 10 a.m. - Teams TBD
Game 10: 1 p.m. - Teams TBD
Game 11: 5 p.m. - Teams TBD
Game 12: 8 p.m. - Teams TBD

Sun., May 28
Division 1 Champ vs. Division 2 Champ, 1 p.m., FSN telecast

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