Texas Collegiate League
Texas Collegiate League logo
|No. of teams||7|
|Most recent champion(s)||Brazos Valley Bombers|
|Most titles||Coppell Copperheads (4)|
The Texas Collegiate League (TCL) is a collegiate summer baseball league comprising teams from the states of Texas and Louisiana.
TCL is headquartered in Coppell, Texas.
The President of the TCL is Uri Geva, owner of the Brazos Valley Bombers.
The TCL played its inaugural season in the summer of 2004 with eight teams in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, and was co-founded by Wayne Poage, former Athletic Director at Dallas Baptist University, and a company controlled by Gerald W. Haddock, a minority owner and General Counsel of the Texas Rangers from 1989 to 1998.
The TCL would nearly fold in 2007, when seven of the original nine teams (all except the McKinney Marshals and the Coppell Copperheads) allegedly decided to boycott the TCL by collectively terminating their interests in the TCL. TCL ceased operations after the season, filed suit against the seven teams to terminate their franchises, and entered into a written license agreement authorizing the owners of the teams who were not part of the boycott (which included the Brazos Valley Bombers and the East Texas Pump Jacks, two new teams which had joined TCL in 2007) to operate a reorganized TCL beginning in 2008.
The 2008 summer season (the first under the reorganized TCL) new attendance records for the league with the Brazos Valley Bombers making the top 50 attendance list of all summer collegiate teams.
Teams from the Texas Gulf Coast (Victoria Generals), Louisiana (Acadiana Cane Cutters and Alexandria Aces), and Greater Houston (The Woodlands Strykers) later joined the league. The Aces left TCL after 2012 and the Copperheads ceased operations at that time, while the McKinney Marshals ceased play during 2011 (and returned in 2012 under the name Texas Marshals).
All players in the league must have NCAA eligibility remaining in order to participate. Players are not paid so as to maintain their college eligibility.
TCL teams are run similar to professional minor league teams, providing players an opportunity to play under the same conditions as the minor leagues. Games are played six days during the week (Monday is the league-wide off-day), in three series of two games each, and wooden bats and major league specification baseballs are used. Season play occurs from late May through early August in a 60-game, split-season format. Each team will visit every other team three times during the season. The first-half winner and runner-up make the post-season, as do the second-half winner and runner-up; should a team be post-season eligible in both halves, the team with the best overall record not already eligible is selected as a wild card. The first half winner and runner-up are given home-field advantage in the playoffs.
|Texas Collegiate League|
|Acadiana Cane Cutters||2011||Lafayette, Louisiana||Fabacher Field||1,400|
|Brazos Valley Bombers||2007||Bryan-College Station, Texas||American Momentum Bank Ballpark||2,121|
|East Texas Pump Jacks||2008||Kilgore, Texas||Driller Park||3,000|
|Texas Marshals||2004 (*)||McKinney, Texas||Jesuit College Preparatory School of Dallas|
|The Woodlands Strykers||2012||The Woodlands, Texas||The Woodlands Christian Academy Stadium||600|
|Victoria Generals||2009||Victoria, Texas||Riverside Stadium||4,000|
(*) The Marshals reformed in 2012 after previously disbanding at the end of the 2010 season.
- Alexandria Aces
- Colleyville-Grapevine Lonestars - Colleyville-Grapevine (later the Euless LoneStars and Colleyville LoneStars)
- Coppell Copperheads - Coppell (http://www.tclcopperheads.com)
- Denton Outlaws - Denton (http://www.thedentonoutlaws.com/)
- Duncanville Deputies - Duncanville
- Granbury Generals - Granbury (replaced by the Denton Outlaws)
- Highland Park Blue Sox - Highland Park (later the Plano Blue Sox)
- Mineral Wells Steam - Mineral Wells
- Weatherford Wranglers - Weatherford
- Wichita Falls Roughnecks - Wichita Falls; formerly of Graham
- Texas Tomcats -Weimar **
(**) Tomcats played only the 2010 season
- 2014 - Brazos Valley Bombers
- 2013 - Brazos Valley Bombers
- 2012 - East Texas Pump Jacks
- 2011 - Coppell Copperheads
- 2010 - Victoria Generals
- 2009 - Coppell Copperheads
- 2008 - McKinney Marshals
- 2007 - Coppell Copperheads
- 2006 - McKinney Marshals
- 2005 - Denton Outlaws
- 2004 - Coppell Copperheads
Notable TCL Alumni
Since the TCL was established, more than 300 TCL players have been drafted by major league teams and no fewer than a dozen have played in the big leagues. Notable TCL alumni include:
- Hunter Pence - Houston Astros, Philadelphia Phillies, San Francisco Giants
- Clay Buchholz - Boston Red Sox
- Chris Davis - Baltimore Orioles
- Adam Moore - Seattle Mariners
- Brandon Belt - San Francisco Giants
- Paul Goldschmidt - Arizona Diamondbacks
- Todd Cunningham - Atlanta Braves