Here are some key takeaways from the rankings.
The South and South Central regions are loaded
Of the 25 teams ranked in the latest NFCA poll, ten are from the South and South Central regions (five apiece).
The South has Alabama Huntsville, Auburn Montgomery, Valdosta State, Rollins and West Florida, while the South Central features Oklahoma Christian, Angelo State, Texas A&M-Commerce, West Texas A&M and Colorado Mesa. All 10 teams rank higher than No. 20.
There’s momentum in the South
Alabama Huntsville and Auburn Montgomery are two of the hottest teams in the sport. Both made it into Monday’s Power 10 rankings for the first time this year.
The Chargers swept then-No. 2 Valdosta State in a three-game series over the weekend. Meanwhile, the Warhawks won their final 15 games of the regular season to clinch the No. 1 seed in the GSC tournament.
Make no mistake, the Blazers are still one of the best teams in the country at 32-6. The same can be said for Rollins, as the Tars have the second-best ERA in DII at 0.76. All of this leaves a 30-win West Florida club at the No. 5 spot in a South region that’s stocked with talent.
Don’t sleep on the Central
Yes, I know the Central region is home to Augustana (SD), the No. 1 team in the country. It’s no secret that the Vikings are championship contenders. But don’t overlook the region as a whole. Central Oklahoma, Minnesota State, Winona State and Southern Arkansas are all ranked in the NFCA poll.
Winona State is tied with Lincoln Memorial and Rollins for the highest fielding percentage in the country at 0.984. The Warriors are also 19-3 on the road and 5-1 at neutral sites this season. They can win anywhere.
Minnesota State is on a 10-game winning streak, while Southern Arkansas has won 13 of its last 14. Keep an eye on the Central as the 2021 tournament approaches.