Dores ready for Omaha opener

Sports

Vanderbilt players jump onto the field to celebrate after beating East Carolina in an NCAA college baseball super regional game Saturday, June 12, 2021, in Nashville, Tenn. Vanderbilt won 4-1 to sweep the three-game series and advance to the College World Series. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – As the VandyBoys sit on the eve of their College World Series opener, head coach Tim Corbin relies on his experience, but he does so mostly alone.

The Commodores have qualified for Omaha five out of the last eleven years, but for all but one player, this is an entirely new experience. Vandy’s ace pitcher Kumar Rocker is the only Dore with playing experience in Omaha. A hand-full have made the trip, but he’s the only one who has seen in-game action at TD Ameritrade Park.

Despite a business-like approach to the NCAA Selection Show and frankly, most of the season, Corbin says his squad was able to take in the excitement of Omaha.

“There’s a celebratory piece of this of coming to Omaha,” he said. “There’s an awe factor to it and you have to allow them to have that awe factor. It’s like going to Disney World as a little kid. You go there and your eyes are wide open to what you see and after a few days, you start to settle in and really start to enjoy the amusement park.”

Omaha in itself is more than a baseball tournament. It’s an experience. And one Corbin says his former-players-turned-MLB stars have said the College World Series is their favorite baseball memory. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime event, after all.

“It’s like any special human event that any of us have. You want to go there and be able to take it in first and then at a point in time, you transition that into that player piece which we will,” he said.

The Commodores road to a back-to-back title begins Saturday. First pitch against Arizona is set for 6:00 p.m. CT.

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