Illini Volleyball

#151      
Let's not get too carried away with this walk down memory lane. In Hambly's first three years, with Bartsch and Ward as AA pin hitters, he took second in the B1G all three years. There are people reading this post who could have at least come close to that with his available talent, which he, admittedly as a great recruiter, brought to Illinois. After that:

2012-8th in B1G - no tournament
2013-4th - sweet 16
2014-3d - sweet 16
2015-7th - sweet 16
2016-8th - no tournament

After beating Michigan yesterday the Illini are tied for 7th, with a far easier schedule than the two teams in front of them, PSU and Purdue, who have tougher schedules including one head to head, which one of them has to lose. For fear of creating a jinx, 12-8 in conference is not inconceivable, as well as a tournament bid.

To this point the only year in which Tamas did not make the tournament was the 2020 covid year in which the schedule was unbalanced against the top teams in the league.

I agree Tamas has to improve his recruiting, noting many of his best recruits have either never or barely played because of injuries. Not sure he can do so when he has to show recruits our facilities compared to the other dominant B1G programs.

I also agree SFC is not the answer for volleyball - too big, no atmosphere, too many conflicts with other events. It does not address the issue of practice or locker room facilities. I also agree Huff needs to be replaced.

Until our facilities improve we are a middle of the road B1G team, I'm sorry to say. I doubt there is anyone out there we could hire who could do more than Tamas has done with what he has to work with. Even Iowa and Indiana have built new facilities in the past 2 or 3 years. Volleyball is perhaps the last Illini major sport who has not seen a major facilities improvement in the past 6 or 7 years. I don't count a video board or paint job as a facility improvement. Whitman has been doing an amazing job improving some of the worst facilities in the B1G. I only hope volleyball is next.
Whitman had a plan to include volleyball in the hockey arena that he had planned for downtown Champaign. That project is probably dead, now, so he'll need a plan B for volleyball. The downtown arena would have been a pretty new face but would have had its own problems. Being close to the dorms, Huff draws a lot of students who are just looking for something cheap to do. It would have been an issue attracting those same students downtown. Parking is also an issue downtown.
 
#152      
Whitman had a plan to include volleyball in the hockey arena that he had planned for downtown Champaign. That project is probably dead, now, so he'll need a plan B for volleyball. The downtown arena would have been a pretty new face but would have had its own problems. Being close to the dorms, Huff draws a lot of students who are just looking for something cheap to do. It would have been an issue attracting those same students downtown. Parking is also an issue downtown.
How many off-campus arenas in any sport have ever really worked well?
 
#155      
Need a new venue that could house VB and WBB. Would be great for the WBB to get our of Assembly Hall. It just doesn't work.
I'd love to move WBB, but these days I'm not sure how feasible/likely it is for them to play on the same surface. Ideal volleyball hardwood is bouncier and more forgiving on the joints than basketball hardwood.
 
#157      

danielb927

Orange Krush Class of 2013
Rochester, MN
It was great to be back in the house last night for the game! The team looked a little shaky at times but the final points tally wasn't far from what you'd expect.

Enjoyed hearing from Assistant Coach Eli Sharping and Director of Ops Andy Wenstrand in the Networkers "Stat Chat" before the game. We learned that the selection committee for volleyball has some positive and negative "bonuses" that go into a "modified RPI" at the end of the season - things like wins over a top 25 team (positive) or too light of a non-con schedule (negative).

Also found out pre-game that the scheduled anthem singer had cancelled, so I enjoyed the chance to sing at Huff again!
 
#158      

danielb927

Orange Krush Class of 2013
Rochester, MN
Penn State lost to Wisconsin in 5 sets tonight. PSU and Purdue now have 7 losses each and finish the season against each other, so if we finish the season 3-0 we're guaranteed at least T-6.

Purdue has to go to Lincoln still too, so more realistically we'd be solo 6 or T-5.

Again, that's assuming we take care of business!
 
#159      

Tophe

Middle TN
I'd love to move WBB, but these days I'm not sure how feasible/likely it is for them to play on the same surface. Ideal volleyball hardwood is bouncier and more forgiving on the joints than basketball hardwood.

WKU has a Teraflex floor that they put on top of the basketball court for their volleyball matches. Maybe that's something we could do if if we had an arena for WBB and VB.

"The court has a shock absorption and frictionless surface that will help the players with repetitive jumping as well as potential floor burns that typically come from hardwood."
 
#161      
WKU has a Teraflex floor that they put on top of the basketball court for their volleyball matches. Maybe that's something we could do if if we had an arena for WBB and VB.

"The court has a shock absorption and frictionless surface that will help the players with repetitive jumping as well as potential floor burns that typically come from hardwood."
When we've hosted NCAA tourney games they brought in their own Teraflex floor and layed it over the top of our floor.
 
#162      

danielb927

Orange Krush Class of 2013
Rochester, MN
After beating Nebraska at home last weekend, OSU dropped two this weekend - @Maryland on Friday and then home against Indiana today. Ouch.
 
#163      

danielb927

Orange Krush Class of 2013
Rochester, MN
Today's match against IU was moved up to 4 PM Central earlier in the week.

IU is a definite cut above MSU and Iowa, sitting at 50th in my Nova rankings and 8-10 in the B1G.

They're coming off a huge road win at tOSU, so hopefully we can keep playing well and catch them in a bit of a hangover to pick up our 5th straight dub.
 
#164      

danielb927

Orange Krush Class of 2013
Rochester, MN
Here's the current "state of the B1G" if anyone's interested.

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#165      
Disappointing performance vs. Northwestern tonight. Finished 10-10 in B10, good for seventh place. Will miss the NCAA tourney.
 
#166      

Tophe

Middle TN
Hoping we do well in the portal this off-season. We need to replace a lot of talent.