Tim Corbin Brings National Title, Relevance to Vanderbilt

vandy

If you had said that Vanderbilt could become one of the country’s elite college baseball programs when Tim Corbin was hired as its new head coach in 2003, you would’ve been considered overly optimistic at best and delusional at worst.

But that’s exactly what Corbin has done during his time with the Commodores, culminating in a national championship series victory over Virginia last Wednesday night. The baseball team became the first men’s program at Vanderbilt to win a national title in school history.

While the Commodores have been relevant on the national stage for the past several years, there was a time before Corbin arrived that the program was an afterthought not just nationally, but in the SEC as well. The school and its fanbase didn’t really get behind the baseball team before Corbin’s tenure, resulting in poor attendance and subpar facilities.

Prior to 2003, Vanderbilt had made just three NCAA tournaments in its history (with the last coming in 1980), and had never made it to a Super Regional. Quite simply, Corbin inherited a program that had the tradition of perennial failure.

Despite the obstacles he faced, it didn’t take long for him to change the culture in Nashville, leading the Commodores back to the NCAA tournament and to their first Super Regional in 2004, just his second season with the team.

The 2007 season was a banner one for the program, as Vanderbilt won the SEC regular season and tournament championships for the first time in school history. Behind the play of a trio of star players, David Price, Pedro Alvarez, and Casey Weathers (each of whom were first team All-Americans), the Commodores entered the NCAA tournament as the No. 1 overall seed.

But their dream season ended earlier than anticipated and in extremely heartbreaking fashion when they were ousted in regional play by the Michigan Wolverines. In the 10th inning of their matchup, Michigan’s Alan Oaks, who batted just .188 during the season, hit a go-ahead home run off of Price to ultimately bring an end to the Commodores’ season.

The 2011 and 2013 seasons also looked like they could potentially be the years that Vanderbilt at long last captured a national title, with the Commodores even advancing to the program’s first College World Series in ’11. But Corbin and his team came up short each time. It almost seemed as if Vanderbilt and its fans were doomed to never feel the exhilaration of a national championship.

Corbin and his young squad changed all of that in 2014, even though many saw this year’s team as the foundation for a future national champion, not a contender to get to Omaha this season. That seemed to be an accurate assessment of the team in April, when the Commodores lost consecutive series to two mediocre SEC opponents, Texas A&M and Arkansas, to fall to 8-10 in conference play.

It was after those losses that Vanderbilt started showing the resiliency that became its hallmark during an improbable NCAA tournament run.

After winning 12 of their final 18 games entering the NCAA tournament, Corbin’s Commodores started their trek to Omaha, defeating Xavier and Oregon (twice) to advance to the Super Regional. There, they faced the Stanford Cardinal, taking two out of three from them to get back to Omaha for the second time in school history.

Vanderbilt dispatched Louisville and UC Irvine before dropping a game to Texas, setting up a do-or-die matchup against the Longhorns. In the rematch, the Commodores were victorious in extra innings, thanks to Tyler Campbell, who made just one start during the regular season. Cambell took over at third base for Xavier Turner, who was suspended for undisclosed NCAA violations, and quickly became a household name among college baseball fans when he hit a walk-off single in the 10th inning to send his team to the College World Series final.

Vanderbilt split the first two games of the final series with the Virginia Cavaliers, setting up a decisive third game for the title. It was in that game that Commodores center fielder John Norwood would etch his name in both Vanderbilt and College World Series lore.

With the game tied 2-2 in the 8th inning, Norwood turned on a Nick Howard fastball to give Vanderbilt a 3-2 lead on the team’s first home run since May 16. When Adam Ravenelle retired Virginia’s final three batters in the final frame, the Commodores had captured the school’s first men’s national championship and second overall (women’s bowling won the national title in 2007).

The run to Omaha by Corbin’s team was like something out of a Hollywood movie, with unheralded players becoming stars and the Commodores fighting off elimination on three separate occasions.

With only two seniors on this year’s roster, Vanderbilt will almost certainly be the favorite to repeat as national champions heading into 2015. Of course, that’s easier said than done, but this team seems to have the necessary character and resolve to pull of the remarkable feat.

Whether or not they will be able to repeat is a question best saved for a better day, because some Vanderbilt fans have been waiting their entire lives to celebrate and cherish this very moment. More celebrations may be on the way for them, as the future looks very bright for the Commodores. After all, now that the first national championship is out of the way, the sky’s the limit for Tim Corbin and the Vanderbilt Commodores.



Comments

  1. Great post at 200 Free Scholarship List |. I was checking coounitnusly this blog and I am impressed! Extremely useful info specially the last part I care for such info a lot. I was seeking this particular information for a long time. Thank you and good luck.

  2. I absolutely love your blog and find most of your post’s to be what precisely I’m looking for.
    Do you offer guest writers to write content for you personally?
    I wouldn’t mind creating a post or elaborating on some of the
    subjects you write concerning here. Again, awesome website!

  3. Great goods on your part, man. I’ve understand your stuff
    previous to and you’re just extremely great. I really like what
    you’ve acquired here, certainly like what you’re stating and
    the way for which you say it. You make it entertaining and you
    still care for to help keep it sensible. I cannot wait to learn much more of your stuff.
    This really is actually a great website.

  4. Hello colleagues, how is all, and what you wish for to say regarding this paragraph, in my
    view its genuinely remarkable in favor of me.

  5. Love this site– very informative and lots to see!

  6. Love this site! Extremely user-friendly and lots to reflect on!

  7. You’re so awesome! I do not think I’ve truly read through
    a single thing like this before. So nice to find someone with genuine thoughts on this topic.

    Really.. thanks for starting this up. This website is something that
    is required on the internet, someone with some originality!

  8. It’s really a cool and useful piece of info. I am just satisfied that you just
    shared this useful information around. Please keep us informed similar to this.
    Thank you for sharing.

  9. Thanks in support of sharing this sort of nice thought, bit of writing is nice,
    thats why we have read it fully

  10. My spouse and I stumbled over here by a different website and thought I may as well check things out.
    I like what I see so now i’m following you. Look forward
    to going over your web page repeatedly.

  11. 9/9/2016 midwestsportsfans.com does it again! Quite a thoughtful site and a good post. Thanks!

  12. Quite a good read. I just forwarded this to a classmate who’s been involved in some research of their own on this topic. To show her appreciation, he just bought me a drink! So, I guess I should say: midwestsportsfans.com, cheers for the meal – LOL!

  13. Hello! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any trouble with
    hackers? My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and I ended up losing many months of hard work due to no
    backup. Do you have any solutions to prevent hackers?

  14. 9/10/2016 I’m pleased with the way that midwestsportsfans.com handles this kind of issue. Generally on point, sometimes polemic, without fail thoughtful and more often than not quite thought-provoking.

  15. This is my first time go to see at here and i am in fact impressed to read everthing at alone place.

  16. Its such as you learn my mind! You seem to comprehend a great deal approximately this,
    such as you wrote the book inside it or something. I feel that
    you simply can do with a few p.c. to pressure the message home a
    bit, however besides that, this can be magnificent blog.
    A fantastic read. I will certainly return.

  17. Have you ever thought about including a little bit more than just your
    articles? I mean, what you say is valuable and all.
    Nevertheless imagine if you added some great graphics or videos to give your posts
    more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with images and clips,
    this website could undeniably be one of the greatest in its niche.
    Amazing blog!

  18. Solid, well-researched content. I just now sent this on 9/15/2016 to a fellow student who has been involved in a little research of his own on this topic. To say thanks, he just bought me a drink! So, I guess I should say: Cheers for the drink!

  19. I am not sure where you are getting your information, but great topic.
    I needs to spend some time learning more or understanding more.
    Thanks for great information I was looking
    for this info for my mission.

  20. If you want to take a good price out of this article then you need to apply
    these strategies in your won weblog.

  21. Thanks for sharing your info. I really appreciate your efforts and I will be waiting for
    your further post thanks once again.

  22. What’s Heading down i’m a new comer to this, I discovered this I have discovered It positively helpful and it has helped me out loads.
    I am hoping to contribute & aid different customers
    like its helped me. Great job.

  23. Thanks for your personal marvelous posting! I quite enjoyed
    reading it, you will be a great author.I will make certain to bookmark your blog and will eventually come back later in life.
    I want to encourage yourself to continue
    your great work, have a nice afternoon!

  24. Terrific work! This is the type of information that should be shared around the internet. Shame on Google for not positioning this post higher! Come on over and visit my site . Thanks =)

  25. You actually make it seem so easy with your presentation but I find this matter to be really something
    that I think I would never understand. It seems
    too complex and very broad for me. I’m looking forward for
    your next post, I’ll try to get the hang of it!

  26. Hey I know this is off topic but I was wondering if you knew of any widgets I could add to my blog that automatically tweet my newest twitter
    updates. I’ve been looking for a plug-in like this for quite some time
    and was hoping maybe you would have some experience with something like this.

    Please let me know if you run into anything. I truly enjoy reading your blog and I
    look forward to your new updates.

  27. Fantastic items from you, man. I have take note your stuff prior to and you’re simply too fantastic. I actually like what you’ve received right here, really like what you’re saying and the way in which during which you are saying it. You are making it entertaining and you continue to care for to keep it sensible. I can not wait to read much more from you. That is actually a terrific site.

  28. It’s appropriate time to make some plans for the future and it is time to be happy. I’ve read this post and if I could I desire to suggest you few interesting things or tips. Perhaps you can write next articles referring to this article. I want to read even more things about it!

Speak Your Mind