Tigers Vault Into Top Five of Baseball Polls


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RICE UNIVERSITY NO. 1 IN COLLEGIATE BASEBALL POLL


TUCSON, Ariz. - Rice University (42-10) has been ranked No. 1 for the first time this season in Collegiate Baseball newspaper's poll of NCAA Division I baseball.


The Owls, winners of 24 of their last 26 games, are the ninth different team to be ranked No. 1 in 2006, an all-time record in the Collegiate Baseball poll which is the oldest college baseball poll with its birth taking place during the 1957 college baseball season. Rarely are there more than a handful of teams ranked No. 1 during an entire season.


North Carolina, ranked No. 1 the previous four weeks, posted a 2-3 record last week and slipped to sixth. The Tar Heels lost two of three at Virginia and a mid-week game against Winthrop. North Carolina also slipped to second in the Atlantic Coast Conference behind Clemson.


Rice won the Conference USA regular season title with a 19-2 record. It marked the 11th straight regular season conference title for the Owls as a member of three different leagues. Rice won the last Southwest Conference championship in 1996 and then nine in a row as a member of the Western Athletic Conference.


Poll Notes: Several teams have been red-hot. Defending national champion Texas has won 10 in a row while Kentucky has won 8 straight and 15 of its last 16. The Wildcats have been victorious in 12 of their last 13 Southeastern Conference games. Clemson and Georgia have won 11 straight while Winthrop has won 9 in a row and Tulane 8 consecutive.


In key conference series over the past weekend, Clemson swept a 3-game series against Florida St. while Baylor swept three from Nebraska and Oklahoma St. swept a trio from Oklahoma. Two teams fell out of the poll this week in Southern Mississippi (0-3 last week) and Old Dominion (1-3).


The Collegiate Baseball newspaper poll is the oldest college baseball poll. Its birth took place during the 1957 college baseball season.

Collegiate Baseball Newspaper's		
NCAA Div. I Poll 
(As of May 15, 2006)				
Rank School (Record)		Points		Previous
1. Rice (42-10)			495		2
2. Cal. St. Fullerton (36-12)	493		3
3. Texas (38-15)		491		4
4. Kentucky (40-11)		488		7
5. Clemson (39-13)		486		9
6. North Carolina (41-11)	484		1
7. Oregon St. (35-13)		479		5
8. Alabama (36-17)		475		8
9. Virginia (41-11)		474		12
10. Nebraska (37-12)		472		6

11. Houston (35-19)		468		10
12. Georgia (35-16)		467		25
13. Oklahoma St. (36-14)	466		26
14. Arizona St. (32-17)		464		20
15. Oklahoma (37-16)		462		11
16. Tulane (37-16)		460		21
17. Georgia Tech. (39-13)	459		16
18. Miami, Fla. (34-17)		458		17
19. Mississippi (33-19)		455		23
20. Arkansas (35-17)		453		13

21. Notre Dame (38-13-1)	451		14
22. Wake Forest (33-17)	        450		19
23. North Carolina St. (34-17)	447		18
24. Baylor (33-19)		446		-
25. Florida St. (37-15)		445		15
26. South Carolina (34-18)	439		24
27. Michigan (33-18)		437		-
28. Pepperdine (36-18)		434		28
29. Hawaii (37-12)		429		29
30. Winthrop (41-12)		427		30

"LOUISVILLE SLUGGER'S" NATIONAL PLAYERS OF THE WEEK


- LHP Dan Brauer, Northwestern: Brauer threw Northwestern's 13th no-hitter in school history as the Wildcats beat Michigan St., 7-0 in a 7-inning contest. Brauer, who only allowed two runners to reach base, struck out 8 while walking 1 as he threw 99 pitches.


- 1B Andy D'Alessio, Clemson: D'Alessio belted 5 home runs and knocked in 9 runs in six games last week for the Tigers as he led Clemson to a 6-0 record. In three games against Duke, he was 5-for-10 with 4 home runs, including two 2-homer games. On the season, he has hit 18 homers in 52 games.


- 1B/DH/P Josh Dew, Troy: Dew had a monster week at Arkansas-Little Rock as he belted four home runs, including three in one game and drove in 11 runs. In a 17-7 win, he hit a solo homer, 2-run homer and grand slam. He barely missed hitting two more homers in the game as he doubled off the top of the well in center and launched another out of the park that was ruled foul. If that wasn't enough, he was the winning pitcher during the final game against Arkansas-Little Rock as he worked five innings with five strikeouts.


Baseball America


DURHAM, N.C. --Rice remained atop Baseball America's weekly Top 25 college baseball rankings for the third straight week by winning a Conference USA series against Houston. Houston slipped from 14 to 16 following the series loss.


Three teams that entered last week ranked in the Top 5 lost conference series on the road. North Carolina slid from No. 2 to No. 5 after losing at Virginia, which climbed into the Top 10 at No. 9. Oregon State fell to sixth after losing at Arizona State, which rose to No. 13. Nebraska went 1-4 on the week and fell to No. 8. Baylor moved into the rankings at No. 25 after sweeping a three-game series from Nebraska.


The Top 10 carnage continued with Oklahoma and Arkansas both losing weekend series to drop to 14th and 15th.


Two former No. 1 teams have compiled double-digit win streaks, with No. 3 Texas having won 10 straight and No. 4 Clemson earning 11 straight wins.


The staff of Baseball America determines the Top 25 rankings. Records indicated are through games of May 14 and do not include ties.

Team W-L
1. Rice 42-10
2. Cal State Fullerton 36-12
3. Texas 38-15
4. Clemson 39-13
5. North Carolina 41-11
6. Oregon State 35-13
7. Kentucky 40-11
8. Nebraska 37-12
9. Virginia 41-11
10. Alabama 36-17
11. Georgia 35-16
12. Georgia Tech 39-13
13. Arizona State 32-17
14. Oklahoma 37-16
15. Arkansas 35-17
16. Houston 35-19
17. Oklahoma State 36-14
18. Mississippi 33-19
19. Notre Dame 38-13
20. Pepperdine 36-18
21. College of Charleston 38-12
22. Miami 34-17
23. Winthrop 41-12
24. Tulane 37-16
25. Baylor 33-19


Dropped Out: Florida State (17), South Carolina (18), Old Dominion (25).


USA TODAY COACHES' POLL

Rank	School (record)	        Points	Prv	votes
1.	Rice (42-10)	        894	1	30
2.	Cal St Fullerton(36-12)	836	3	3
3.	Clemson (39-13)	        806	7	3
4.	Texas (38-15)	        796	4	0
5.	North Carolina (41-11)	722	2	0
6.	Kentucky (40-11)	684	10	0
7.	Virginia (41-11)	674	11	0
8.	Georgia Tech (39-13)	637	9	0
9.	Alabama (36-17)	        579	12	0
10.	Oregon State (35-13)	569	5	0
11.	Nebraska (37-12)	518	6	0
12.	Arizona State (32-17)	445	17	0
13.	Oklahoma (37-16)	432	8	0
14.	Georgia (35-16)	        422	22	0
15.	Arkansas (35-17)	343	14	0
16.	Miami (Fla.) (34-17)	292	20	0
17.	South Carolina (34-18)	279	15	0
18.	Florida State (37-15)	246	13	0
19.	Mississippi (33-19)	210	23	0
20.	N Carolina St (34-17)	206	16	0
21.	Houston (35-19)	        155	21	0
22.	Baylor (33-19)	        150	nr	0
23.	Notre Dame (38-13-1)	146	18	0
24.	Oklahoma State (36-14)	93	nr	0
25.	Tulane (37-16)	        76	nr	0

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