OMAHA, Neb. -- The College World Series begins Saturday, and predicting a winner is as hard as hitting a ball out of the cavernous TD Ameritrade Park.

Of the eight teams that made it to Omaha, only No. 3 Virginia and No. 7 TCU are national seeds. UC Irvine and Texas Tech are the surprise teams that undoubtedly will be favorites of the local fans who love to cheer for underdogs. Here are 10 things to know as you try to figure out which two teams will make it to the finals:

2014 COLLEGE WORLD SERIES
Top Performers: Day 8
Breeze: Trio stars in Vanderbilt's 10-inning thriller Photos
Kroll: Garrido sums up UT loss: ‘It’s a cruel game’
Breeze: Pitching fuels UVa.'s run to CWS Finals  Photos
Kroll: Ole Miss' well runs dry in loss to Virginia
Top Performers: Day 7
Cross: Texas takes advantage of Vandy mistakes
Kroll: Hinojosa remains talk of town  Photos
Top Five Plays through first 10 games
Top Performers: Day 6
Cross: Bianco's boys have perfected elimination game
Kroll: Ole Miss advances behind Allen  Photos
Top Performers: Day 5
Kroll: Hinojosa's homer leads Longhorns  Photos
Cross: Hollingsworth tosses gem in second start of season
UC Irvine's Morales finds inspiration in his sister
Top Performers: Day 4
Kroll: Cavs find time for it all in win  Photos
Cross: Virginia shows off pitching depth in 15 innings
Cross: Ole Miss makes most of chances  Photos
Kroll: Texas Tech beaten at own game as CWS run ends
Ole Miss goes to the zoo   Meet the Bortles brothers
Top Performers: Day 3
Kroll: Vandy hits magic number for CWS win  Photos
Cross: Vanderbilt's Bueler answers the call in relief
Kroll: Texas makes the plays Louisville can't  Photos
Cross: How bullpens will help decide the CWS
Corey Ray & Ro Coleman: Chicago's Finest
Top Performers: Day 2
Kroll: Kirby, Papi lead Virginia to victory  Photos
Kroll: Morrison makes his pitch on CWS stage  Photos
Higgins: Ole Miss fans flock to Omaha
Hill: TD Ameritrade Park the stage -- and a star
Higgins: Texas enjoys off day at team barbeque
Hill: Plenty of dads spending Father's Day at the CWS
Vanderbilt's antics in the outfield
Top Performers: Day 1
Kroll: Vandy pushes right buttons in opening win  Photos
Hill: Louisville fans thrilled to be back in Omaha
Higgins: Stirring pre-game ceremony marks Flag Day
Kroll: UC Irvine debunks myth in Game 1 win  Photos
Hill: Despite team's fortunes, LSU fans show up in Omaha
CWS grounds crew is Omaha's unsung home team
Freshman, senior share thoughts on opening ceremony
Kroll: Five questions to get to know players and coaches
Higgins: Quizzing the coaches on CWS history
Hill: Players and coaches discuss favorite sports movies
Photo Essay: CWS contenders take their cuts
Photo Essay: Talented players dot CWS landscape
Team Capsules  |  Opening Round Matchups  |  Draft Picks
Highlights  |  Brackets: Interactive  Print
Bravo, Big 12
Three of the Big 12's nine baseball-playing members reached the CWS. Texas is in Bracket 1 and Texas Tech and TCU, which meet Sunday, are in Bracket 2. The only other year the Big 12 had three teams in the CWS was 2005 (Baylor, Nebraska, Texas). It's the first time the Lone Star State has had three teams in Omaha in the same year.

Homer haven it's not
If you and your buddy are making a friendly bet on number of CWS home runs, take the "under" if the over-under is set in double digits. Only 22 have been hit in three years at TD Ameritrade, including three in 2013, and no one has cleared the fence in center field.

If the ball goes out ...
Mississippi appears to be the team best-suited to knock it out of the park. The Rebels have hit six homers in six NCAA tournament games, and their total of 42 is most among CWS teams. Junior first baseman Sikes Orvis has hit 14 of his 18 career homers for the Rebels this season. UC Irvine, on the other hand, has gone deep just 12 times.

Yes, that's Roger's kid
Kacy Clemens, son of seven-time Cy Young Award winner Roger Clemens, is Texas' starting first baseman. The freshman is batting .220 with one homer and 18 RBIs. He wears No. 42, double the now-retired No. 21 his dad wore for the Longhorns when they won the 1983 national championship.

Yes, that's Calvin's kid
Lukas Schiraldi, son of former big-league pitcher Calvin Schiraldi, is in the rotation for Texas. Calvin was the most outstanding player of the 1983 CWS and was teammates with Roger Clemens, not just at Texas but with the 1986 Boston Red Sox. Calvin was the hard-luck loser against the New York Mets in Games 6 and 7 of the '86 World Series. Lukas, drafted in the 15th round by the Texas Rangers, is 7-3 with a 4.08 ERA.

Future pros
The highest draft pick in Omaha is Vanderbilt pitcher Tyler Beede, who went 14th overall to the Giants. Beede had a school-record 14 wins last year but enters the CWS 8-7 with a 3.58 ERA. Other first-rounders are pitchers Brandon Finnegan of TCU (17th, Royals) and Nick Howard of Virginia (19th, Reds).
Who got drafted?:

Welcome back, coach
If Virginia coach Brian O'Connor feels at home at the CWS, it's not just because it's his third appearance in six years. He grew up in neighboring Council Bluffs, Iowa, and went to college a few blocks away at Creighton. O'Connor pitched on CU's 1991 CWS team, and he was an assistant on Notre Dame's 2002 team that reached Omaha.

Redemption tour
Louisville, the only returning team from 2013, hopes to leave town in better spirits this time. The Cardinals went two-and-out a year ago, losing 2-0 to Indiana and falling behind 10-0 on their way to an 11-4, four-error loss to Oregon State.

Red Raiders strong-armed
The pitchers deserve lots of credit for leading Texas Tech to its first CWS. In six NCAA tournament games, the Red Raiders have scored a total of nine runs and are batting .208 with one homer. Seven pitchers, however, have combined for an 0.65 ERA in 55 innings, with opponents batting .166.
Postseason stats

Been there, done that
Two members of the UC Irvine coaching staff were on the 2007 CWS team that infected Omaha with "Anteater Fever" by winning two extra-inning games in final at-bats. Pitching coach Daniel Bibona was a freshman on that team who was Big West pitcher of the year in 2009 and '10. Assistant Ben Orloff was a sophomore shortstop who was 2009 Big West player of the year.