OLE MISS NOTEBOOK: Bianco, Godwin were foes in Lafayette

OleMissLogoBy Parrish Alford

Daily Journal

LAFAYETE, La. – Ole Miss coach Mike Bianco and assistant coach Cliff Godwin both have a Moore Field history.

They were on opposites – neither the winning side – when Louisiana-Lafayette hosted a regional in 2000.

Bianco was head coach at McNeese State, Godwin a player for East Carolina, which was the No. 1 seed.

“It was a big-time college baseball atmosphere,” Godwin recalled. “The fans were very passionate and very good fans. They pulled hard for their team.”

Godwin’s name has been mentioned in connection with various head coaching positions, his alma mater among them.

He says he didn’t play particularly well in his regional experience here but does have fond memories of his last at-bat of the year. It came against the host Ragin’ Cajuns, who would go on to win a super regional.

“I was like, ‘Man, I’m all over this guy.’ He threw me a change-up, and I capped it over the shortstop’s head,” Godwin recalled. “They were beating us by a few runs then. It was a good experience from the standpoint that it helped our team, propelled us into 2001 to host a regional and a super regional.”

Heat and home runs

Moore Field (capacity 3,755) has an artificial surface, not just on the infield but all around.

Robichaux says he’s seen different teams handle it differently, and how they respond often has to do with how they adjust to South Louisiana heat and humidity.

The fact that ESPN has scheduled three night games for the Lafayette Super Regional should make temperatures less of an issue, Robichaux said.

Sometimes that humidity is an issue for hitters trying to drive balls over the fence.

The field is 330 feet down both lines and 400 feet to straight-away center.

“Sometimes we’ll get a little breeze blowing in, and the ballpark will play a little bigger. We believe it to be a pitcher’s ballpark,” Robichaux said.

ULL hit 66 home runs this season while giving up 26. At Moore Field they hit 37 home runs and allowed 14.

Ole Miss has hit 39 home runs this season while allowing 19.

Winning on weekends

While a regional often takes on a festive atmosphere with four teams the super regional is basically a three-game series.

It’s a format all teams are familiar with, though it’s a series that will cut short if one team wins the first two games.

ULL (57-8) won all 14 regular season series including a pre-conference matchup with Alabama.

The Cajuns got shutouts in the first two games to win 2-0 and 6-0 before losing 12-6 in the finale.

ULL won every Sun Belt Conference weekend and finished 26-4 in league play.

parrish.alford@journalinc.com