Before the season began, Southern Miss-Ole Miss gleamed as a Top 25 matchup. Both schools, coming off highly successful seasons, appeared in various national preseason polls. Collegiate Baseball Magazine had USM at No. 18 and Ole Miss, the reigning national champ, at 24, plus Mississippi State at 22. Sadly, the Big 3 have fallen out of the CB poll and most of the others, though UM still shows up in a couple. Even if some of the luster is gone from tonight’s USM-UM game (6 p.m.) at Trustmark Park in Pearl, the crowd will be large and the intensity high. USM comes in with a 14-9 record, 3-3 in the Sun Belt Conference. After a hot start to 2023, Ole Miss has slipped to 15-9 and is 0-6 in the SEC. The Rebels beat the Golden Eagles 11-5 in Oxford on March 7. The two schools clashed in a drama-filled Super Regional in Hattiesburg last year. … A few miles from the TeePee tonight, NCAA Division III rivals Belhaven and Millsaps will meet at the Majors’ Twenty Field in a game that will decide the Maloney Trophy Series winner for 2023. Millsaps is 14-11 with five straight wins, Belhaven 13-9 with a 10-game win streak. P.S. Poll news: William Carey University (23-6 with seven straight wins) is No. 20 in the current NAIA coaches poll. Pearl River Community College is No. 3 in the NJCAA Division II poll, with Meridian at 6 and Jones at 9. The Bobcats are in first place in the MACCC standings.