Baseball Postseason Breakdown Series: Day VI

NORMAN, Okla. -- Sooners Illustrated now presents the sixth part of the seven-day series with the positives and negatives of this year.

The positives:

The Sooners' win total reached at least 40 yet again--For the third straight year, they finished past the 40-win plateau. This year, OU rattled off 41 victories en route to a 41-19 overall record. Last season, OU's College World Series squad was 50-18, and in 2009, it ended 43-20 after losing to Arkansas in the Norman Regional Final.

OU set a program-record for best start--With its 16-0 start out of the gates, the 2011 team entered the record books as the one with the best start in Sooner baseball history. It defeated William & Mary four times, Arkansas-Pine Bluff twice, Oakland thrice, before beating San Diego State, San Diego, Cal, San Diego State again and then Arkansas-Little Rock twice to cap-off the 16-game winning streak.

Ten Sooners earned All-Big 12 honors--Third baseman Garrett Buechele, catcher Tyler Ogle and ace Michael Rocha headlined the group with First Team All-Big 12 honors. First baseman Cameron Seitzer and left fielder Casey Johnson made the second team. Designated hitter Evan Mistich, left handed pitcher Dillon Overton and righty Burch Smith were named to the honorable mention, and pitcher Jordan John joined Overton on the All-Big 12 Freshman Team.

The negatives:

Season culminated short of the College World Series--Coming into the year, OU was a heavy favorite to make a return trip to Omaha and potentially be one of the teams to earn a trip both to the final year at Rosenblatt and first year at TD Ameritrade Park. But OU was unable to do so after getting ousted in the Fort Worth Regional with a pair of losses.

The Sooners failed to win the Big 12 Conference--Not only were they favorites to make the CWS again, but they were the preseason pick to win the conference, and that didn't happen. OU dropped its first conference series of the season to Texas A&M and never got on top after that. It was truly a two-horse race between the Aggies and Texas Longhorns, who eventually tied for first.

OU lost yet another series to Texas--It marks the 13th straight season OU has dropped the season series to its Red River rival. One has to go all the way back to 1998 to find the last time the Crimson and Cream defeated the Burnt Orange in at least two of three in baseball. The only positive out of this negative was the fact that OU managed to salvage the series and end a 10-game overall losing streak against UT with 5-2 win in the finale.

Stay tuned for the final version of the postseason breakdown series tomorrow.

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