VolleyMob Men’s Power Rankings #6-10 (Preseason): Stanford Looks Ready to Break Out

  0 Derek Johnson | December 30th, 2017 | Big West, College - Men's Indoor, EIVA, MPSF, News, Rankings

The 2018 Men’s Volleyball season is less than a week away, so it’s time to unveil the inaugural VolleyMob Men’s Power Rankings. Over the course of the season this set of data will go 20 deep and take into account a heavy portion of resume to go with eye test, statistics, etc.

We continue our journey into the preseason rankings with teams ranked 6th to 10th in the opening rendition. Teams ranked 16th to 20th were released on Wednesday with 11-15 yesterday. The top five will come out tomorrow.

VolleyMob Men’s Top 20 Power Rankings (Preseason):


  • 2017: MPSF Quarterfinalist, #9 in final Coaches Poll, 13-13 (8-10 MPSF, T-6th)
  • Returning Letterwinners/Starters (at least half of matches): 14/4 + Libero
  • Incoming Freshmen (AVCA All-Americans)/Redshirts/Transfers: 4 (3)/1/0
  • Key Losses: None with National/Conference Recognition
  • Key Returners: MB Kevin Rakestraw (2017 AVCA All-America HM), L Evan Enriques (2017 AVCA All-America HM), OH Jordan Ewert (2017 All-MPSF HM)
  • Top Newcomers: OH J.P. Reilly (AVCA First-Team HS AA), OH Leo Henken (AVCA Second-Team HS AA), OH/RS Jaylen Jasper (VolleyBall Mag HS Player of the Year)
  • Other Notes: None
  • Bottom Line: Stanford brings back four players who started 15 or more matches and five others who started at least four matches on the year. They did lose Gabriel Vega but experience and depth is abound for the Cardinal who also add three high school All-Americans. Not to mention that none of their losses were award-winning players. This could be Stanford’s chance in a re-shaped MPSF to compete for and win a league title, although two more teams to come in the rankings land in the top five.


  • 2017: NCAA Semifinalist, #4 in final Coaches Poll, 27-6 (14-4 MPSF, 3rd)
  • Returning Letterwinners/Starters (at least half of matches): 12/3 + Libero
  • Incoming Freshmen (AVCA All-Americans)/Redshirts/Transfers: 4 (1)/4/1
  • Key Losses: S Jennings Franciskovic (2017 AVCA First-Team AA), MB Hendrik Mol (2017 AVCA All-America HM), OH Kupono Fey (2017 All-MPSF HM)
  • Key Returners: RS Stijn van Tilburg (2017 AVCA First-Team AA), L Larry Tuileta (2017 AVCA Second-Team AA), MB Patrick Gasman (2017 MPSF All-Freshman Team), OH Rado Parapunov (2017 MPSF All-Freshman Team)
  • Top Newcomers: L/DS Gage Worsley (AVCA First-Team HS AA) S Jayce Ashment (Transfer from Long Beach City College)
  • Other Notes: Now part of the Big West instead of the MPSF
  • Bottom Line: The Rainbow Warriors tied for the most wins in program history last year and finished the season ranked higher than any Hawaii team since 2010. They look ready to build off their success, but they’ll have to fill some holes first with the loss of three award-winning starters. A strong recruiting class though will add to the team’s depth and could help with any roster questions to pair with van Tilburg, Gasman and Parpunov in the front and Tuileta in the back. They’ve got enough talent where if those questions are answered, they will be right back in the National Championship conversation.


  • 2017: MPSF Semifinalist, #5 in final Coaches Poll, 20-7 (13-5 MPSF, 4th)
  • Returning Letterwinners/Starters (at least half of matches): 12/3
  • Incoming Freshmen (AVCA All-Americans)/Redshirts/Transfers: 7 (3)/4/0
  • Key Losses: RS Tamir Hershko (2017 AVCA Second-Team AA), S Michael Saeta (2017 AVCA Second-Team AA), OH Thomas Hodges (2017 AVCA All-America HM), L Dillon Hoffman (2017 AVCA All-America HM)
  • Key Returners: MB Scott Stadick (2017 AVCA All-America HM, MPSF Freshman of the Year)
  • Top Newcomers: S Sean Farmer (AVCA First-Team HS AA), MB Zevan Williams (AVCA First-Team HS AA), L AJ Faille (AVCA Second-Team HS AA)
  • Other Notes: Leaving the MPSF for the inaugural season of the Big West
  • Bottom Line: UC Irvine will test how good they are in a tough schedule with the loss of three starters and the libero – all of which earned some sort of AVCA All-America honors. Still, the cupboards are full with talent and depth which gets infused with a top tier recruiting class. They may lack some experience, but easing things are the return of Stadick and OH Aaron Koubi, who didn’t play in enough matches to qualify for postseason awards but likely would have after being second on the team in kills per set (3.05) and averaging 1.31 digs per set.


  • 2017: NCAA Tournament, #10 in final Coaches Poll, 21-11 (11-3 EIVA, 1st)
  • Returning Letterwinners/Starters (at least half of matches): 12/4 + Libero
  • Incoming Freshmen (AVCA All-Americans)/Redshirts/Transfers: 5 (1)/4/0
  • Key Losses: OH Chris Nugent (2017 AVCA Second-Team AA)
  • Key Returners: RS Calvin Mende (2017 AVCA All-America HM), OH Aidan Albrecht (2017 EIVA Second-Team)
  • Top Newcomers: OH Will Bantle (AVCA First-Team HS AA)
  • Other Notes: None
  • Bottom Line: Penn State head coach Mark Pavlik is 542-173 in his career, so the Nittany Lions should have confidence that they will once again be near or at the top of EIVA play where they can earn an NCAA Tournament bid. They’ll be without Nugent, but Mende and Albrecht should provide a punch at the pins. If they can get strong middle play, as they also lose Matt Callaway, and serve receive to go with it, the Nittany Lions should be back in the NCAA Tournament.


  • 2017: MPSF First Round, #8 in final Coaches Poll, 10-12 (8-10 MPSF, 6th)
  • Returning Letterwinners/Starters (at least half of matches): 14/4 + Libero
  • Incoming Freshmen (AVCA All-Americans)/Redshirts/Transfers: 7 (3)/1/0
  • Key Losses: None with National/Conference award recognition
  • Key Returners: OH David Wieczorek (2017 AVCA All-America HM)
  • Top Newcomers: OH Alex Gettinger (AVCA Second-Team HS AA), RS Troy Magorien (AVCA Second-Team HS AA), L Spencer Wickens (AVCA Second-Team AA)
  • Other Notes: Moving from the MPSF to the Big West for 2018
  • Bottom Line: Pepperdine’s record didn’t prove how tough of competition they were, but their final ranking did with their brutal schedule. They’ll look for improvement this year as although they lose Mitchell Penning (block leader) and Joshua Stewart (assist leader), they have plenty of depth back. That depth only gets better with one of the best recruiting classes in the entire country. If some of their freshman make big contributions, they could sneak even further up the rankings.

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