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History of the Men's College World Series

IMG_8756by:Daniel Hager06/13/24

DanielHagerKSR

The 2024 Men’s College World Series gets underway on Friday, marking the 76th edition of the event.

Before Kentucky embarks on its first ever journey through Omaha, here’s a quick look at the event and its history.

The first Men’s College World Series was held in 1947 in Kalamazoo, MI. The event didn’t find its home in Omaha until 1950, where it was held at Rosenblatt Stadium until 2010. The College World Series has been played at Charles Schwab Field since 2011 after Rosenblatt was demolished.

For those unaware with the format, the eight teams participating in the event are split into two, four-team double elimination brackets. These play out just like the Regionals, where the two winners of the double elimination brackets will meet in the College World Series Finals.

USC has won the most NCAA Championships with 12, but it hasn’t reached the World Series since 2001. LSU broke its tie with Texas for the second most wins with its Championship last season, as the Tigers now sit at seven. Texas is squarely in third place with six Championships.

LSU celebrates 2023 National Championship | LSU Athletics

10 of the 16 SEC teams (including Oklahoma and Texas) have won an NCAA Championship (Florida, Georgia, LSU, Mississippi State, Missouri, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, South Carolina, Texas, Vanderbilt). Just Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Kentucky, Tennessee, Texas A&M have yet to win a title, but that could change this year as Kentucky, Tennessee, and Texas A&M are in the College World Series.

The Southeastern Conference has won 15 overall NCAA Championships, which is second to the now defunct Pac-12 Conference (18). An SEC team has made the College World Series Finals in seven consecutive seasons, and in 13 of the last 14 seasons.

There have been 75 recipients of the Men’s College World Series Most Outstanding Player Award, but just eight went on to be named All-Stars in Major League Baseball. Dave Winfield is the lone Hall of Famer.

  • 1973 MCWS MVP: OF Dave Winfield (Minnesota) 12x MLB All-Star
  • 1965 MCWS MVP: 3B Sal Bando (Arizona State) 4x MLB All-Star
  • 2002 MCWS MVP: RHP Huston Street (Texas) 2x MLB All-Star
  • 2014 MCWS MVP: SS Dansby Swanson (Vanderbilt) 2x MLB All-Star
  • 1977 MCWS MVP: 3B Bob Horner (Arizona State) 1x MLB All-Star
  • 1992 MCWS MVP: 3B Phil Nevin (Cal State Fullerton) 1x MLB All-Star
  • 2010 MCWS MVP: OF Jackie Bradley Jr. (South Carolina) 1x MLB All-Star
  • 2018 MCWS MVP: C Adley Rutschman (Oregon State) 1x MLB All-Star

Although Kentucky has never made the College World Series, there are two players on the roster who have. Third baseman Mitch Daly (who made it with Texas in 2021 & 2022) and right-hander Robert Hogan (who made it with Texas A&M in 2022) will not be headed to Omaha for the first time.

“I would say being able to go back with guys that I love means a lot,” Hogan said Sunday night. “And doing something that UK has never done before means even more. Just like it’s almost speechless. I don’t even know how to put it. I don’t know how to put it. That we’re going.”

Of the eight teams in the 2024 field, Kentucky is the lone team making its College World Series debut.

  • Florida State (23 prior appearances, last in 2019)
  • Florida (13 prior appearances, last in 2023)
  • North Carolina (11 prior appearances, last in 2018)
  • Texas A&M (Seven prior appearances, last in 2022)
  • Tennessee (Six prior appearances, last in 2023)
  • Virginia (Six prior appearances, last in 2023)
  • NC State (Three prior appearances, last in 2021)
  • Kentucky (Zero prior appearances)

Kentucky arrived to Omaha Wednesday afternoon, but won’t play its first game until Saturday at 1:00 p.m. CT/2:00 p.m. ET. First up for the Cats? The NC State Wolfpack, who took down Georgia in the Athens Super Regional to clinch its fourth ever College World Series appearance.

Follow KSR at the College World Series

KSR the show may not be headed to Omaha this weekend, but the website will be well-represented. KSR baseball beat writer Daniel Hager and videographer Steven Peake hit the road on Friday to capture all the action and excitement for Kentucky’s first College World Series appearance. They’ll be sharing all of their adventures on the site, social media, and special editions of “Bat Cat Beat” and Rapid Reactions on the KSR YouTube Channel, so make sure you’re following and subscribed to keep up with the Cats.

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2024-07-24