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On Deck: Arkansas-Pine Bluff

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Srsly, guys? You're doing a preview of the Arky-Pine Bluff baseball team?

It's baseball season officially, so yes, we're doing anything we can to take our minds off the NIT, inane recruiting "updates"(Tobias Singleton likes macrownni n cheez) and a lack of meaningful football.

Quick. Name Arkansas-Pine Bluff's mascot. 

See? Maybe those things aren't so important – oops, broke the moratorium.

It's the Golden Lions in case anyone was wondering. Arky-Pine Bluff is a member of the SWAC, which means its Web site is tragically uninformative and hardly updated. Check out the baseball schedule, there's a few games without final scores beside them. Not really sure if it's because they played a non-D1 school or what, but we'll just go with a 1-5 overall record.

The Golden Lions are ranked just a smidge under 300 in the latest RPI rankings by Warren Nolan. Ole Miss sits pretty at #12...that's basically all you need to know.

Good players for UAPB? Hmm, let's see...Lloyd Burchett and Hinton Huckabee lead the team in batting average and anchor the left side of the infield defensively. This team has also stolen 14 of 20 bases in the six games recorded on its athletic Web site. 

The UAPB offense averages nearly five runs a game, but pitching is not a strong point for the G-Lions giving up nearly six runs a game. There's no word yet on who will start for UAPB.

The Rebels will put Rory McKean on the mound for his second start and sixth appearance for the year. McKean is 1-1 with a 8.22 ERA. Most of the issues with McKean's ERA came from his first appearance of the year, which was absolutely an implosion, giving up several earned runs over less than an inning. He's settled down some since then and had a decent midweek start last week. 

I feel confident McKean will give at least four strong innings of work tonight. Also, Taylor Hightower could have a busy night against a team that will be looking to cause havoc on the basepaths to stay in the game.

The news around the team is that Matt Snyder could be hitting off a tee as early as today to see how his shoulder is feeling after a dislocation during the Tulane weekend. Until we find out anything from this batting practice, it's hard to say whether or not this is good or bad news.

Head Coach Mike Bianco also shared with the EotC that the weekend rotation of Pomeranz, Barrett and Tracy will stay in place for the Kentucky series in Oxford this weekend.

But for now, let's await the bloodshed from this evening...should be fun.

Final prediction

Ole Miss 11

UAPB 1