TCU’s early exit from Big 12 Tournament could cost Frogs hosting Fort Worth Regional

·3 min read
Roger Steinman/Courtesy of TCU Athletics

TCU baseball’s fate will be left up to the NCAA.

And the way things have gone for the Horned Frogs in the past day or so, that might not be the best news.

The Horned Frogs (37-20) were eliminated from the Big 12 Conference tournament in a 8-4 loss to Oklahoma State on Friday at Globe Life Field.

TCU, which won the Big 12 regular-season championship and was the top seed in the tournament, will have to wait until Monday to learn if it’ll host a regional.

Going 1-2 in the conference tournament could lead to the NCAA forcing the Horned Frogs to go on the road for the postseason.

The 64-team field and 16 regional hosts will be announced at 11 a.m. Monday on ESPN2.

Wherever the Frogs play in the postseason, they’ll start without their head coach Kirk Saarloos. The first-year coach who was named the Big 12 Coach of the Year this week, was suspended two games by the NCAA for “excessive expression” after he was ejected in Thursday’s loss to Texas.

Saarloos’ suspension began with Friday’s loss and will end after TCU’s postseason opener, wherever and against whichever team it is.

TCU could have probably clinched a Fort Worth Regional with at least two wins in the tournament. Going 1-2, however, coupled with the fact that three Big 12 teams have higher RPI rankings (Texas, Oklahoma State, and Oklahoma), could leave room for the NCAA committee to send the Frogs on the road. TCU’s RPI ranking was No. 33 as of Thursday evening.

The No. 4-seeded Cowboys (37-19) had two four-run innings to take down the Frogs. OSU stayed alive to play No. 5 Texas at 9 a.m. Saturday. The Longhorns beat OSU 4-0 in the opening round on Wednesday.

TCU took a 3-0 lead after two innings, but a three-run third by the Cowboys tied it up. Griffin Doersching’s two-run homer knocked Frogs’ starter Riley Cornelio out of the game.

A bases-loaded hit-by-pitch by reliever Caleb Bolden tied it, at 3-3 and a fielder’s choice by OSU’s Chase Adkison gave the Cowboys a 4-3 lead.

Doubles by Brayden Taylor and Bobby Goodloe tied it at 4-4 in the bottom of the inning, but OSU responded with a four-run fifth.

TCU has won the Big 12 Tournament championship three times, including in 2021.

Big 12 Conference Baseball Tournament

(at Globe Life Field)

Friday’s results

Oklahoma State 8, TCU 4

Texas Tech vs. Kansas State, late

Thursday’s results

Oklahoma State 11, Baylor 1 (7)

Kansas State 8, West Virginia 5

Texas 5, TCU 3

Oklahoma 6, Texas Tech 3

Wednesday’s results

No. 5 Texas 4, No. 4 Oklahoma State 0

No. 1 TCU 4, No. 8 Baylor 2

No. 2 Texas Tech 5, No. 7 Kansas State 3

No. 3 Oklahoma 6, No. 6 West Virginia 4

Saturday’s games

Oklahoma State vs. Texas, 9 a.m., ESPN+

Oklahoma vs. Texas Tech/KState Winner, 12:30 p.m., ESPN+

Game 11 Loser vs. Game 11 Winner (if necessary), 4 p.m., ESPN+

Game 12 Loser vs. Game 12 Winner (if necessary), 4 p.m. or 7:30 p.m., ESPN+

Sunday’s game

Championship game, 5 p.m., ESPNU

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