The Stanford men’s volleyball team, which returns their 2018 leader in almost every offensive category, has released its 2019 season schedule.
The team will start its season with a non-counter against NAIA school Menlo College on January 4th, part of an 8-match home stand to start their season. Their first road trip will be to face long-time MPSF rivals and preseason 3rd-ranked Hawaii for a double-header on February 1st and 3rd. Hawaii, beginning last year, joined the newly-formed men’s volleyball division of the Big West Conference.
The Cardinal do have some soft matches out-of-conference, but have paired that with some huge showdowns. Besides Hawaii, they will play a January match against 2016 and 2017 NCAA Champions Ohio State, and a pair against UC Irvine (VM’s #2-ranked team pre-season) on January 17th and 19th.
The Cardinal return all but 2 key players from their 2018 team, and are 14th in our pre-season, way-too-early power rankings. The key exceptions are middle blocker Kevin Rakestraw (2018 MPSF Second Team) and libero Evan Enriques (AVCA 2nd-Team All-America). They bring back 5 of their 6 leaders in kills, and their starting setter Paul Bischoff. The list of returnees includes Jaylen Jasper, who made the VM All-Freshman Team last year, and has the potential of a very potent offense in 2019.
Between their conference and non-conference schedules, the Cardinal will play each of the top 5 teams in the nation, and 7 of the top 8 teams in the nation, in the regular season.
- January 12th, vs. #8 Ohio State (2016, 2017 NCAA Champions)
- January 17th, 19th, vs. #2 UC Irvine
- February 1st, 3rd, @ #3 Hawaii
- February 7th, @ #4 UCLA (defending NCAA runners-up)
- March 8th, @#1 Long Beach State (defending NCAA Champions)