Dec. 21, 2000

NORMAN, Okla. - With the start of the 2001 season less than two months away, the University of Oklahoma baseball team garnered its first pre-season accolades as the team was ranked 15th in Collegiate Baseball's pre-season poll, which was released today. It marks the first pre-season ranking for the Sooners, who finished the 2000 season unranked in all polls, since the 1998 season when OU appeared in every initial poll, receiving the highest ranking from Collegiate Baseball - who ranked the Sooners 12th that year.

"We're very pleased with such a high ranking in this poll," commented Head Coach Larry Cochell. "We feel that with the talent we have coming back and what we've added to this club, we are looking forward to having a promising season ahead of us."

The poll, which was the first announced by any of the major publications covering college baseball, had the Sooners ranked as the second-highest Big 12 Conference team in its top-40 poll behind Nebraska's No. 4 ranking. Four other Big 12 teams received mentions in the poll as well, including Baylor (No. 17), Texas (No. 26), Texas A&M (No. 34) and Oklahoma State (No. 35). Arizona State and Alabama were the other two 2001 Oklahoma opponents that appeared in the poll, ranked sixth and 24th, respectively.

The Sooners closed out the 2000 season with a 41-23 overall record and their seventh NCAA Tournament appearance in the last 10 years. The regional appearance followed a third place finish in the Big 12 regular season with a 20-10 record and a third place finish in the conference tournament.

OU will open its 2001 schedule at home on Friday, Feb. 2, against Oklahoma Baptist at 3 p.m. at L. Dale Mitchell Park.

RecordPts
1. Georgia Tech50-16-0478
2. Southern California44-20-0477
3. Louisiana St.52-17-0473
4. Nebraska51-17-0469
5. Clemson51-18-0465
6. Arizona St.44-15-0462
7. Rice43-23-0460
8. Florida St.53-19-0456
9. Miami, Fla.41-19-1455
10. South Carolina56-10-0453
11. Stanford50-16-0449
12. Cal. St. Fullerton38-21-0446
13. Florida44-23-1442
14. Notre Dame46-18-0439
15. Oklahoma41-23-0437
16. Georgia32-26-0433
17. Baylor45-17-0430
18. Auburn41-20-0429
19. Central Florida43-19-0425
20. Stetson48-16-0424
21. Mississippi St.41-20-0420
22. Long Beach St.31-25-0418
23. Evansville41-22-0415
24. Alabama41-24-0411
25. Tennessee40-23-0409