SUWANEE, Ga. – Trinity University is the preseason favorite to win the 2011 Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference baseball championship. Head coach Tim Scannell’s Tigers received nine of the 11 coaches’ first-place votes followed by Millsaps College with the remaining two first-place votes.

Trinity earned an automatic bid and the program’s fifth appearance in the NCAA Division III regionals last season. The Tigers posted a 32-9 record and the SCAC West Division title in 2010 while securing the program’s eighth 30-win season since 2000.

As for the division races, Birmingham-Southern College received five of the six first-place votes while tallying 35 points and is the clear preseason favorite to win the East. Rhodes College and DePauw University round out the top three spots.

Oglethorpe University, Centre College and Sewanee: University of the South round out the East. In the West, defending SCAC champion Trinity garnered four of the five first-place votes and is favored to win the division. Millsaps College, with 20 points and the remaining first-place vote, was tabbed second.

The top three teams from each division qualify for the 2011 SCAC Baseball Championship on April 21-24 at USA Stadium in Millington, Tenn.

Birmingham-Southern, in its fourth year of provisional membership in Division III, is not eligible for postseason play. However, games against Birmingham-Southern will count in the league standings.

Individually the SCAC returns one D3baseball.com All-American in sophomore first baseman Bruce Maxwell of Birmingham-Southern. Maxwell, along with teammate Brandon Ricco, also was named a 2011 D3baseball.com Preseason All-American. Maxwell hit .427 with 15 home runs, 61 RBI and 48 runs scored. He also tallied 18 doubles, one triple while posting a .860 slugging percentage and a .503 on-base percentage.

2011 SCAC PRESEASON POLL
Pos. Eastern Division Points (First-Place Votes) 2010 Record
1 Birmingham-Southern College * 35 (5) 34-5
2 Rhodes College 28 (1) 27-17
3 DePauw University 25 26-17
4 Oglethorpe University 18 19-23
5 Centre College 13 12-21
6 Sewanee-University of the South 6 7-28
Pos. Western Division Points (First-Place Votes) 2010 Record
1 Trinity University 23 (4) 32-9
2 Millsaps College 20 (1) 25-15
3 Southwestern University 15 13-26
4 Hendrix College 10 18-18
5 Austin College 7 19-20
In the East, first-place votes (in parentheses) were worth six points, second-place votes worth five, third-place votes worth four, fourth-place votes worth three, fifth-place worth two and sixth-place votes were worth one point. In the West, first-place votes (in parentheses) were worth five points, second-place votes worth four, third-place votes worth three, fourth-place votes worth two and fifth-place votes were worth one point. Predicted order of finish was selected exclusively by the conference’s head coaches.