This weekend, Cornhuskers, Cowboys, Razorbacks, and Wildcats will take over the Dr Pepper Ballpark as the inaugural Frisco College Baseball Classic, a four-team, round robin tournament, will make its debut on the home field of the Double-A Frisco Roughriders.
We are thrilled to be hosting four of the nation’s top collegiate programs in one of the nation’s most beautiful (minor league) venues,” Nathan Wooldridge, General Manager of the Frisco College Baseball Classic, said. “It was our hope to bring something new and exciting to the Frisco community, and we truly believe we are on the right track to accomplishing that.”
Three of the schools in this tournament, Arkansas, Nebraska and Oklahoma State, boast huge alumni bases in Dallas-Fort Worth, which means there will be plenty of UA, NU and OSU fans in the Frisco stands.
And since they’ll all be wearing their school colors, there should be a sea of Cardinal and White (Arkansas), Red and White (Nebraska) and Orange and Black (OSU) anytime those schools hit the diamond.
But let’s not forget about Arizona, who also has a nice alumni presence in DFW, just not to the level of these three other schools. Along with OSU, the Wildcats are one of two teams in the tournament to play in the 2016 College World Series, an event where UA advanced all the way to the finals.
OSU head coach Josh Holliday knew playing in this tournament was a win-win for his Cowboys for two primary reasons.
It’s an awesome venue,” Holliday said of Dr Pepper Ballpark. “The teams are excellent. It sounds like a College World Series-type bracket. It’s an area of the country that we have numerous alumni, great fans. It’s a great recruiting area for us. So many positives about the tournament and it’s something we look forward to be a part of.”
But Holliday, who also played at OSU, isn’t the only coach excited to see what this inaugural event has to offer in terms of in-game atmosphere and competition, Nebraska head coach Darin Erstad is also excited about this tournament.
And if Erstad is a name which sounds familiar to local baseball fans, that’s because he’s the same Darin Erstad who spent the bulk of his big-league career playing for the Rangers’ American League West rivals, the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
We’re excited to be in the first Frisco Classic. They have put together a really solid field, one that includes two CWS teams from last year,” Erstad said. “We have a lot of alumni in the area, so it’ll be great to see Husker Nation at Dr Pepper Ballpark.”
Dr Pepper Ballpark has been home to the Roughriders since 2003 and has also hosted the Texas League All-Star Game, which it will do again this summer, plus local high school baseball.
But the Baseball Classic will mark the first time this venue has been used for a college tournament. Considering the field of this inaugural event and that college baseball is kind of a big deal in DFW, with the top-ranked team in the sport residing across town in the TCU Horned Frogs of Fort Worth, the Frisco College Baseball Classic has the makings of becoming a popular annual staple here.
With neither the Roughriders or the Rangers starting their seasons for well over a month, catching some or all of the Frisco Baseball Classic is a great way to satisfying any baseball-related cravings you might be having.
After all, since the grass is already growing in our yards, the trees are starting to bloom, and the temperatures are anything but winter-like, spring has already sprung, right? And spring means one thing, and that’s baseball!