After taking a winner-take-all game for the 2012 Conference USA regular season title, Rice will be the No.1 seed at the C-USA Baseball Championship presented by Trustmark, which begins Wednesday at Trustmark Park in Pearl, Miss. The Owls secured a share of their sixth C-USA regular-season crown in seven years with a series victory at UCF on the final weekend. For Rice (39-15), it marks the 17th consecutive season that the Owls have won a conference championship, dating back to 1995, the final year of the Southwest Conference.
The 2012 Conference USA Championship presented by Trustmark will feature the top eight teams in regular-season league play. Those eight will be split into two four-team pools (or pods), with the winner of each pod playing in a single championship game. Teams are assigned pods based on seed, which are determined by the order of finish in regular-season conference play.
Each team is guaranteed to play three games. Teams in each pod will play all three other teams in its pod. The team with the best composite record in each pod advances to the championship game. Two-way ties in a pod will be broken by head-to-head play. In the case of a three-way tie, the highest seed will advance.
Game times are 11 a.m., 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday with the championship game slated for 1 p.m. on Sunday afternoon. The championship game will be nationally-televised by CBS Sports Network.
Pod number one features No.1 seed Rice, No. 4 seed Southern Miss, No. 5 seed Memphis and No. 8 seed Houston. Pod number two includes No. 2 seed UCF, No. 3 seed Tulane, No. 6 seed East Carolina and No. 7 seed UAB.
Game Schedule (All Times Central)
Wednesday, May 23
Game 1 (5) Memphis vs. (4) Southern Miss 11:00a
Game 2 (8) Houston vs. (1) Rice 3:00p
Game 3 (6) East Carolina vs. (3) Tulane 7:00p
Thursday, May 24
Game 4 (7) UAB vs. (2) UCF 11:00a
Game 5 (8) Houston vs. (4) Southern Miss 3:00p
Game 6 (5) Memphis vs. (1) Rice 7:00p
Friday, May 25
Game 7 (7) UAB vs. (3) Tulane 11:00a
Game 8 (6) East Carolina vs. (2) UCF 3:00p
Game 9 (8) Houston vs. (5) Memphis 7:00p
Saturday, May 26
Game 10 (3) Tulane vs. (2) UCF 11:00a
Game 11 (7) UAB vs. (6) East Carolina 3:00p
Game 12 (4) Southern Miss vs. (1) Rice 7:00p
Sunday, May 27 (televised by CBS Sports Network)
Championship Game 1:00p