Tuesday, May 22, 2018
Colleges

Buckeyes hire basketball coach; FSU, UF to open baseball Super Regions

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Butler basketball coach Chris Holtmann will replace Thad Matta as coach at Ohio State, the Buckeyes announced Friday.

Holtmann, the reigning Big East coach of the year, will earn about $3 million a year under an eight-year deal. He is the 14th coach in program history.

Matta was fired Monday.

"Chris is focused on academics, is a high-integrity person, a relentless recruiter with Midwestern ties and a proven winner," athletic director Gene Smith said.

Holtmann, 45, took the Bulldogs to the NCAA Tournament each of the past three seasons.

He had a 70-31 record with the Bulldogs, 25-9 last season.

Baseball

FSU, UF OPEN super regions TODAY: The Seminoles play Sam Houston State in Tallahassee at noon (ESPN2) and the Gators play Wake Forest in Gainesville at 3 (ESPN). FSU is preparing for an unorthodox offense — the Bearkats bunt in virtually any situation. They rank fourth nationally in sacrifice bunts, and will bunt with two strikes and/or two outs. "If you're not on your toes, they will literally embarrass you," FSU coach Mike Martin said. As for Florida, its strength, pitching, has to be effective against the Deacons (school-record 100 home runs, .311 team average, 229 of 663 hits for extra bases). One factor: McKethan Stadium is larger than Wake's ballpark — 326 leftfield line, 365 left-center, 400 center, 375 right-center and 321 rightfield line. Ex-Alonso star Alex Faedo starts for UF today.

SUPER REGION NEWS: Oregon State ace left-hander Luke Heimlich, a prospect for next week's MLB draft who in 2012 pleaded guilty to molesting a 6-year-old female family member, asked to be excused from playing against Vanderbilt to avoid being a distraction. His criminal history came to light Thursday. "I hope I can eventually be judged by the person I am today," he said. Host Oregon State opened its series against Vanderbilt late Friday. … Host schools Texas A&M, Louisville and Long Beach State won their openers.

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