The RussMatt Central Florida Invitational hosts over 250 colleges annually in all divisions (NCAA D I, II, III, NAIA and JUCO). Our difference is in lodging, affordability, facilities, customer service, organization, and convenience.
Why do so many college coaches choose RussMatt Baseball for their spring break tournament needs?
1) Scheduling: All scheduling matchups are done by utilizing a scheduling algorithm to find the optimal schedule based on coaches preferences. We have over 50+ years of scheduling experience overseeing the process as well. After receiving the list of participating teams in November, coaches submit our on-line schedule request form indicating the number of games per day, off day and who they do and do not want to play. In addition to that information, we know who should be matched-up based on previous year’s records and NCAA regions (coaches can request in-region games, a schedule based on win-loss records or a combination of both). Full practices with on-field BP are also available.
2) Lodging: In addition to affordable hotel options ($60-$129 per night), our condo (from $142 per night) and pool home ($135-$185 per night) offerings are very popular choices among college coaches. For the equivalent of $80 per night, quad occupancy in a hotel room, players can have their own bed, 2 full baths with showers, washer dryer, full kitchen, cable TV, heated pool and internet hook-up in our spacious condos and pool homes. (see Team Hotel/Condos tab for more info).
3) Affordability: We don’t bundle fees like other tournaments do (combining game fees, hotel charges and meal expenses) allowing us to offer the lowest rates in the business, saving your team thousands of dollars (see Team Registration tab for more info).
4) Facilities: The RussMatt Central Florida Invitational features two former major league spring training stadiums (Indians and Tigers) plus, with the addition of 4 more fields at Lake Myrtle Park, 14 pro back fields at two complexes ten miles apart in Winter Haven and Auburndale, FL (half way between Tampa and Orlando, FL). We also use six nearby Polk County colleges plus a couple top flight municipal parks as auxiliary fields when needed (see Venue Photo tab for more info).
5) Customer Service: Over 90% of our teams return each year (see testimonial tab here). In addition to the owner/tournament director being a former college coach, all of our site directors are former college coaches who understand baseball and coaches/players needs. Water and cups are supplied for all games/practices. All fields are dragged and lined before/between games and are maintained by professional grounds crews. Stadium games have a p.a. announcer and scoreboard operator. On site locker rooms are available for get-away-day showers at no additional charge.
6) Play, Stay and Eat Option: Our two most popular hotels (Holiday Inn Winter Haven and Hampton Inn Winter Haven) are located across the street from Chain of Lakes Park, one of two main playing venues. Teams choosing this option can walk across the street to their games and eat at numerous casual dining, fast food and other local restaurants, all within walking distance of either hotel (there are 4 popular casual dinning establishments within eyesight of both properties).
7) Umpires: Unlike other Florida spring break tournaments that use local umpires or students from nearby umpire schools, RussMatt Baseball only hires experienced, northern college umpires that are assigned to northern college conferences, including many who regularly work NCAA D I games. We also solicit feedback from coaches on umpires in order to make improvements ever year.
8) Proximity to Major Florida Airports: The 2 main complexes for the RussMatt Central Florida Invitational are located in Winter Haven and Auburndale FL, about an hour’s drive to either Orlando International or Tampa Airport.
Contact: For more information on the 2018 RussMatt Central Florida Invitational contact:
RussMatt Baseball President