The good news is that the University of Louisville baseball team will be hosting an NCAA Regional this weekend at Jim Patterson Stadium.
The not-so-good news is that Kentucky has been invited, too, bringing with it the sideshow atmosphere that always accompanies the UofL-UK rivalry, including the Kentucky followers.
Louisville’s goal is always to return to the College World Series. But when these two schools get together, often it’s not as much about being the better team as it is about the angst that exists between the programs. Just keeping the the other school from advancing becomes a major issue.
Kent State, the team UofL meets in the opening round at 6 p.m. Friday, and Kansas, which plays UK earlier at 2 p.m., won’t have the emotional involvement and can focus solely on baseball.
UofL lost two games to the Wildcats during the regular season with freshman Josh Rogers on the hill in both games. Hopefully, a couple of the Louisville front liners — like Kyle Funkhouser, Jared Ruxer or Anthony Kidston — will be available if they meet again next weekend.
Not looking ahead or past anyone but a matchup is inevitable.