College World Series 2013: Full Predictions for Every Team

Benjamin Klein@BenjaminJKleinContributor IIIJune 13, 2013

Jun 9, 2013; Nashville, TN, USA; Louisville Cardinals pitcher Cody Edge (13) reacts to striking out Vanderbilt Commodores outfielder Mike Yastrzemski in the top of the ninth to win the game during the Nashville super regional of the 2013 NCAA baseball tournament at Hawkins Field. Louisville won 2-1. Mandatory Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports
Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports

Starting Saturday, the quest for a National Championship continues for eight college baseball teams from across the nation.

It only takes five victories in Omaha, Neb. in order to win the College World Series. The goal is to avoid a pair of losses before making it to the Championship Series. If that does happen, well, you’re team is no longer in contention and will be sent home early.

The top team from each of the two brackets will get to play each other at least twice in order to determine which program gets crowned as a champion—although it could end up taking three games.

The eight teams in Omaha are very similar this year. While most have good hitting, each has at least one dominant pitcher. The games at the CWS aren’t likely to be very high scoring, and some matchups may even require extra innings. But while the result of each game has yet to be determined, we are allowed to make predictions.

Here’s a look at how each team still alive in the CWS is expected to do when games begin on Friday afternoon. Winning five games may not seem like much, considering how many games each of these programs won this season, but it’ll be the toughest thing these young men have ever done. Let’s see how things will play out.

Bracket 1 Schedule and Predictions

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Game Date Time (ET) CWS Team CWS Team
1 Saturday, June 15 3 p.m. Mississippi St. Oregon St.
2 Saturday, June 15 8 p.m. Indiana Louisville
3 Monday, June 17 3 p.m. Game 1 Loser Game 2 Loser
4 Monday, June 17 8 p.m. Game 1 Winner Game 2 Winner
5 Wednesday, June 19 8 p.m. Game 3 Winner Game 4 Loser
6 Friday, June 21 3 p.m. Game 4 Winner Game 5 Winner
7 *Saturday, June 22 3 p.m. Game 6 Winner Game 6 Loser
*If necessary

Mississippi State Bulldogs

The Bulldogs have a lot of good pitching, but I’m not convinced that Mississippi State’s offense is going to provide enough run support to advance very far in Omaha. It won’t be easy taking out Oregon State in the opener, and then a matchup against Indiana or Louisville won’t bode well either. Although the Bulldogs have averaged more than six runs per game this season, their bats will be quieted at the CWS.

Prediction: Eliminated in Loser’s Bracket

Indiana Hoosiers

While Indiana and Louisville look to be evenly matched, the Hoosiers are going to have issues scoring in the opener, and that will put them into the loser’s bracket. I do, however, think that Indiana has the talent to stay alive for one more game, eliminating Mississippi State. But a matchup against Oregon State in the bracket semifinal will be too much for the Beavers, and they’ll be sent home a little early.

Prediction: Eliminated in Bracket Semifinal

Oregon State Beavers

Oregon State’s pitching is very tough to defeat, and with so many solid options, the Beavers will go deep into the tournament. The Beavers should take care of Mississippi State in the opener, but I think they’ll struggle against Louisville's arms. Oregon State will rebound for another opportunity to play the Cardinals, but it will again fall, just a victory away from the Championship Series.

Prediction: Eliminated in Bracket Final

Louisville Cardinals

Louisville has the top pitching staff in the top bracket, and the Cardinals hurlers will take them very far at the CWS. Even if the bats don’t come alive each game, the guys on the mound will do enough to pick up the victories. The Cardinals shouldn’t have too much trouble winning the bracket, but winning in the Championship Series—against LSU (see below)—is going to be nearly impossible.

Prediction: Eliminated in Championship Series

Bracket 2 Schedule and Predictions

Game Date Time (ET) CWS Team CWS Team
1 Sunday, June 16 3 p.m. North Carolina NC State
2 Sunday, June 16 8 p.m. UCLA LSU
3 Tuesday, June 18 3 p.m. Game 1 Loser Game 2 Loser
4 Tuesday, June 18 8 p.m. Game 1 Winner Game 2 Winner
5 Thursday, June 20 8 p.m. Game 3 Winner Game 4 Loser
6 Friday, June 21 8 p.m. Game 4 Winner Game 5 Winner
7 *Saturday, June 22 8:30 p.m. Game 6 Winner Game 6 Loser
*If necessary 

North Carolina Tar Heels

The Tar Heels have one of the most balanced teams in Omaha this year, and as the No. 1 team in the country, they will have a target on their backs. UNC almost didn’t make it to the CWS, but it now has a clean slate, looking to make history. I think the Tar Heels will have an easy time against NC State in the opener, but they will fall to LSU in the following game. After a victory, the Tar Heels will drop another to LSU.

Prediction: Eliminated in Bracket Final

UCLA Bears

UCLA is in a bit of trouble. The Bears are the team to play LSU in the Omaha opener, which doesn’t bode well for UCLA. LSU is the best team in Omaha, and the Bears will be a loss away from going back to California after playing the Tigers. A win over NC State in the loser’s bracket will earn them one more game at the CWS, but the Bears don’t have much of a chance against UNC, when the two will face off in the bracket semifinal.

Prediction: Eliminated in Bracket Semifinal

North Carolina State Wolfpack

NC State just doesn’t have the offense that’s necessary to make a run at the CWS. The team only has two hitters batting over .300 this year and don’t have many power options, either. The pitching is good, but it’s not good enough to make much of an impression. The Wolfpack will be headed home after a loss to UNC in the opener and then another loss to UCLA in the loser’s bracket.

Prediction: Eliminated in Loser’s Bracket

LSU Tigers

The Tigers aren’t ranked as the No. 1 team in the country, but they are the team to beat in Omaha—not UNC. LSU has a great collection of top-notch pitchers and hitters. They should cruise through their bracket and shouldn't face much of a test in the Championship Series. The Tigers will end up sweeping their opponent—Louisville in my opinion—and dog piling on the middle of the mound in celebration. The Tigers will be the National Champions.

Prediction: National Champions