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The Indiana Daily Student

sports baseball

56-game schedule announced for IU’s expected final season at Sembower

The Hoosiers’ 56-game schedule for what is expected to be the IU baseball team’s final season at Sembower Field was released Friday.

IU Coach Tracy Smith’s Hoosiers will be on the road for the first month of the season before their home opener on March 21 against Eastern Kentucky.

The Big Ten opener against Penn State comes two days later on the road. IU will welcome new Big Ten member Nebraska to Sembower from May 5 to 7.

One change in the non-conference portion of the schedule from previous seasons has the Hoosiers traveling to southern California during spring break.

IU will play Cal State Northridge, Loyola Marymount and San Diego on the west coast swing, which will be a trip home for six California natives on the Hoosiers’ roster.

“The west coast part is just something we want to do for them,” Smith said. “I’m proud of the fact that they made the decision to come here, and I want to show them off.”

The 2012 campaign for IU opens up on Feb. 17 as the Hoosiers head to Florida to take part in the Big Ten/Big East challenge for three games.

Following the Florida trip, IU has a weekend series against two-time College World Series participant Tulane and against East Tennessee State the following weekend.

With the addition of Nebraska to the Big Ten, every team in the ring the season. The Hoosiers filled that gap with Georgia Southern, who is coming to Bloomington for a weekend series from April 20 to 22.

Smith’s Hoosiers were scattered around the country for the summer, and the skipper said he was impressed with a pair of his sophomore pitchers.

“Matt Dearden pitched his team to a championship in the Northwoods League, which is a very competitive league, and Joey DeNato finished in the top 10 in ERA in the (Cape Cod League),” Smith said. “Summer ball is a chance to go out and experience a different part of the country. We spread them out all over the country, and it’s a great experience socially and from a development standpoint, too.”

The first day of fall ball for IU will be on Sept. 11 and will last five weeks, concluding the with the annual Cream and Crimson series on Oct. 10. The series will be an intrasquad scrimmage with five games throughout the week (Oct. 10, 11, 13, 15
and 16).

Last spring, IU struggled to adjust to the new type of aluminum bats now used in college baseball. Smith said this fall will be crucial for his team.

“Last year, I felt we got caught in the whole bat transition, and the home runs were not part of our games much last year,” Smith said. “This year, we brought a lot of speed in, and we are going to ask a lot of guys to probably move positions based on our ability to get the best and most athletic lineup out on the field as possible.”

2012 SCHEDULE

FEB. 17-19 vs. TBD at Tampa Bay/St. Petersburg, Fla.
Feb. 24-26 vs. Tulane University at New Orleans, La.
March 2-4 vs. East Tennessee State University at Johnson City, Tenn.
March 6 vs. University of Louisville at Louisville, Ky.
March 7 vs. Indiana State University at Terre Haute, Ind.
March 9-11 vs. Cal State Northridge at Northridge, Calif.
March 13-14 vs. San Diego at San Diego, Calif.
March 16-18 vs. Loyola Marymount University at Los Angeles, Calif.
March 20 vs. Eastern Kentucky University at Richmond, Ky.
MARCH 21 vs. Eastern Kentucky University at home
March 23-25 vs. Penn State University at University Park, Pa.
March 27 vs. Xavier University at home
MARCH 28 vs. Xavier University at Cincinnati, Ohio.
March 30-April 1 vs. Iowa at home
April 4 vs. Ball State University at home
April 6-8 vs. Illinois at Champaign, Ill.
April 11 vs. Indiana State University at home
April 13-15 vs. Michigan State University at home
April 17 vs. University of Louisville at home
April  20-22 vs. Georgia Southern at home
April 24 vs. Miami (OH) University at home
April 25 vs. Miami (OH) University at Oxford, Ohio
April 27-29 vs. Michigan at Ann Arbor, Mich.
May 5-7 vs. University of Nebraska at home
May 9 vs. University of Kentucky at home
May 11-13 vs. Northwestern at Evanston, Ill.
May 15 vs. University of Evansville at home
May 17-19 vs. Ohio State University at home

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