The top 5 men’s volleyball stories of the week

It’s your top five men’s volleyball story list, but with a twist.

Every Sunday during the men’s volleyball season I will post the top five best men’s volleyball stories of the week from around the nation. The list, though, is based more on how well the reporter wrote and covered the story rather than just what happened on the court.

I will be primarily looking at a college newspapers — they provide the majority of coverage to the sport — but occasionally I will include some well written men’s volleyball articles from professional newspapers.

Spending four years as a men’s volleyball beat reporter for The Ball State Daily News I am well aware of the challenges facing most of these reporters.

In many communities volleyball is a non-mainstream sport that has a niche following. One of the reasons I always loved covering volleyball, though, was because with every story I wrote I knew I needed to find an angle that could appeal to volleyball and non-volleyball fans.


Going beyond the boxscore and game notes to provide readers with insight on the team that they can’t got anywhere else is one of the most important skills for a sports reporter.

This list is to honor those efforts.

Egypt’s chaos troubles Cal Baptist’s Khattab
Jim Alexander | The Press-Enterprise
This column focuses on how the government instability and political protests in Egypt have affected Cal Baptist outside attacker Mohamed Khattab. The senior grew up in Egypt and his family still lives in the troubled nation. This is without a doubt the best and most gripping men’s volleyball column I have read in recent years.

Freshman’s energy sparks teammates
Bill Landis | The Daily Collegian
The Daily Collegian sports staff showed once again why it is one of the best newspapers in the nation at reporting on men’s volleyball with its coverage of Penn State’s home matches against UC Irvine and Cal State Northirdge this weekend. However, its most interesting story came earlier in the week about how outside attacker Jace Olsen excessive on-court talking has positively changed the entire team’s demeanor during matches.

Pfeiffer happy for opportunity to play Ball State
Daniel Sipocz | The Ball State Daily News
After getting swept by Cardinals, this article examines how for Pfeiffer just getting the opportunity to play at Ball State is a good thing for its program. In addition, it looks at how Ball State playing matches like this can help lead to further growth of men’s volleyball and possible expansion in the NCAA Tournament.

Once a Rambler, always a Rambler
Garrison Carr | The Phoenix
This personality profile story on Loyola coach Shane Davis highlights how has been able to turn the Ramblers into a nationally ranked program. It also discusses the coach’s initial hesitance of taking over the Loyola program after finishing his All-American playing career at the school in 2003.

UCLA falls to USC in four games
Jacob Ruffman | Daily Bruin
This gamer looks at the Bruins loss to the undefeated Trojans, despite having an outstanding home match environment. What ultimate put this story in the top five was the author’s use of an embodiment delayed lead to highlight just how loud the Bruins crowd was during the match.