*University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma gets the award for earliest start to a baseball season by a local team. The Drovers went to Tyler, Texas, last Saturday — Jan. 26 — and swept a doubleheader from Texas College, 7-0 and 14-1. Plenty of people received playing time, including six pitchers on USAO's part. Seth Sturgeon and Clinton Selman blanked the Steers on four hits, no walks and five strikeouts in the first game
*Central Oklahoma was picked fourth and Northeastern State 11th in the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletic Association preseason baseball poll. Central Missouri was No. 1, receiving 14 of 15 possible first-place votes. Missouri Western, which had the other first-place vote, was second, and Emporia State was third.
*Ron Bradley of Rogers State was named Rawlings-NAIA Regional Coach of the year for the Plains Region. Bradley was recognized for leading the Hillcats to the NAIA World Series finals for the first time. Rogers State has been playing baseball since 2006.
*Keep an eye on the Oklahoma Baptist men's golf team. The Bison had a spectacular fall tournament season, finishing in the top-five three times. Coach Kenny Lindsey said one of the challenges will be to “play at the same level in the spring season. When we play to our ability, we can play with any team in the country.” The Bison are deep in talent; Ethan Fine Todd Balkin, Drew Posada and Alexander Hall are expected to be the top-four players for a program trying to reach the NAIA Championships for just the second time in history.
COMPILED BY SCOTT MUNN