Sept. 27, 2006
The Bears are known for consistently playing one of the nation's toughest schedules, and 2007 is no different. Baylor's schedule features 36 games (64.3 percent of schedule) against 13 opponents (59.1 percent of opponents) who participated in the 2006 NCAA Tournament. The Bears play 22 games (34.3 percent) against eight opponents (36.4 percent) who finished the 2006 season ranked in the Baseball America Top 25.
From March 27 to April 22, Baylor plays 16 consecutive games against teams who participated in the 2006 NCAA Tournament. At no point in the season will the Bears go more than five games without facing such an opponent. Of Baylor's 20 games prior to the start of Big 12 Conference play, 14 are at Baylor Ballpark.
"This is a challenging schedule, as our schedule usually is," Smith said. "Our fans will have plenty of chances to see us play top competition, both in and out of conference. Hopefully playing a lot of home games - and a lot early - will help our younger players get acclimated to the program and to college ball in a familiar environment."
For the fourth time since 2001, Baylor opens its season at the Minute Maid Park Astros College Classic in
Baylor's home opener is Feb. 13 against
The Bears' final two weekends of non-conference play are round-robin tournaments. Baylor faces
Big 12 play begins the weekend of March 16-18 with the annual split-series against Texas; the Bears and the Longhorns meet Friday at Austin before the series shifts to Baylor Ballpark for the Saturday and Sunday contests. Baylor's split series against Texas A&M is April 27-29 with the Bears hosting the Friday game.
Other Big 12 schools visiting
Last season, Baylor's strength of schedule ranked 10th nationally; the Bears joined
Baylor's cumulative strength of schedule over the past 10 years ranked ninth nationally, according to research by Boyd Nation of BoydsWorld.com. Southern California was deemed to have played the toughest 10-year schedule, followed by UCLA,
Baylor returns 18 letterwinners, five starters and eight pitchers from a 2006 squad that posted a 37-26 record and reached the NCAA Tournament for the eighth time in nine years.