Every day at VolleyMob we will preview several of the most notable and interesting matches in NCAA Division I Women’s Volleyball. We will offer an inside look at some of those top matchups each day as we carry along through the 2017 season.
*Note: The VolleyMob Top 25 Power Rankings are utilized for a team’s ranking
*The entire week’s schedule can be seen here.
THE BIG MATCH:
#1 Penn State (28-1, 18-1) at #7 Minnesota (26-4, 15-4) – 7 pm ET
- How to follow: BTN Plus/Penn State Radio/Game Tracker
Minnesota played in an absolute thriller in last year’s regular season finale, as sure enough it came against the number one team in the country and a team at the top of the Big Ten standings. That was Nebraska, while this year it’s Penn State, as the Golden Gophers would gladly take another five-set victory. For Penn State, this match represents an opportunity to win at least a share of the Big Ten title – even though it may not be the automatic bid.
Speaking of the NCAA Tournament, Penn State should be in line for a top four seed with a win in this one. They likely will get one even with a loss, but with so many teams competing for four spots, it’d be no guarantee. The Golden Gophers meanwhile may get back in that discussion with a win, although more likely than not this one could be about pride and peaking at the right time heading into the postseason for them.
OTHER NOTABLE MATCHES:
#2 Florida (24-1, 16-1) at Missouri (20-10, 13-4) – 2:30 pm ET
- How to follow: SEC Network Plus/Florida Radio/Live Stats
Florida is just one win away from an SEC title, while a loss keeps them from not just the conference crown but also likely a top four seed from the NCAA Tournament committee. Meanwhile for Missouri, a win would do wonders as they should be in the NCAA Tournament as of now, but this victory would likely cement it.
#4 Texas (23-2, 15-0) at #9 Baylor (23-5, 13-2) – 3 pm ET
- How to follow: Baylor Video/Baylor Radio/Game Tracker
Normally a top 10 showdown would be the match of the day, but with another one that could figure into a conference champion, this one falls to other notables. It wasn’t far from helping determine the conference though, as if Texas would have fallen at any point earlier it would have given the Bears a shot at the Big 12. As of now though, Texas needs this win for a top four seed in the NCAA Tournament, while Baylor could use the win for better seeding and hosting purposes.
#19 UCLA (18-10, 11-8) at #12 USC (22-8, 14-5) – 10 pm ET
- How to follow: Pac-12 Networks/UCLA Radio/Live Stats
The Bruins earned a big road win at Oregon State earlier in the week, as they have now won five of their last seven matches at a good time. USC has been solid all year long, as they went from unranked in the preseason to second in the Pac-12 and likely a team that will host in the first two rounds. That Pac-12 season got started off with a win at UCLA too, as the Trojans won a tight one in five.
BEST OF THE REST:
West Virginia (17-12, 5-10) at #15 Kansas (22-6, 11-4) – 2 pm ET
- How to follow: ESPN3/Kansas Radio/Live Stats
(RV) Illinois (20-10, 11-8) at Ohio State (15-15, 8-11) – 7 pm ET
- How to follow: BTN Plus/Illinois Radio/Game Tracker
Iowa (18-14, 7-12) at #5 Nebraska (25-4, 18-1) – 8 pm ET
- How to follow: BTN Plus/Nebraska Radio/Iowa Radio/Live Stats
#3 Stanford (25-3, 18-1) at California (13-17, 4-15) – 10 pm ET
- How to follow: Pac-12 Networks
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