The turnover in the national media polls continues following another weekend of upsets.
UC Irvine became a unanimous No. 1 in the newest national media poll released Tuesday afternoon, while Ohio State made the biggest move in the poll jumping up two spots to No. 5.
Check out this week’s top 10 men’s volleyball media poll and my ballot with explanations on why I ranked each team where I did.
Let the debate begin on who are the best teams in the nation.
Volleyball Magazine Men’s Division I-II Top 10 Poll
1. UC Irvine — 100 (10) points
2. Long Beach State — 85 points
3. BYU — 79 points
4. Pepperdine — 72 points
5. Ohio State — 58 points
6. Stanford — 55 points
7. UCLA — 29 points
8. Cal State Northridge — 27 points
9. Penn State — 25 points
10. Hawai’i — 9 points
Others receiving votes: Harvard, USC, Lewis
My Volleyball Magazine Men’s Division I-II Top 10 Poll ballot
1. UC Irvine (13-3, 10-3 MPSF)
Last week’s results: defeated UC Santa Barbara and UC San Diego
UC Irvine had a season-high .493 attack percentage in its sweep against UC San Diego and outside attackers Kevin Tillie and Jeremy Dejno combined for only 21 kills. The Anteaters offense is rolling.
2. Long Beach State (11-4, 9-3 MPSF)
Last week’s results: defeated Pacific and Stanford
Long Beach State beat Stanford by 14 points in the final game of its sweep Saturday. If that was a statement win it was received by this voter.
3. BYU (9-3, 8-2 MPSF)
Last week’s results: defeated USC, lost to Pepperdine
BYU outside attacker Taylor Sander bounced back from a season-low 11 kills in a loss to Pepperdine and had a match-high 23 kills against USC. Don’t expect Sander to put up only 11 kills in a five-game match the rest of his college career.
4. Pepperdine (7-4, 7-4 MPSF)
Last week’s results: defeated Cal Baptist and BYU
Maurice Torres and Josh Taylor may be the nation’s best outside attacker combination. The victory against BYU was impressive but it didn’t move the Waves ahead of the Cougars because Pepperdine has one more loss than BYU.
5. Ohio State (10-2, 4-0 MIVA)
Last week’s results: defeated Ball State and IPFW
Coach Pete Hanson and assistant coach Sean Byron are the most under-rated coaches in the nation when it comes to recruiting. The Buckeyes every year lose All-Americans and every year the coaches replace them with future All-Americans.
6. Stanford (9-5, 6-5 MPSF)
Last week’s results: defeated Cal State Northridge, lost to Long Beach State
When Stanford loses it loses badly. However, this is still a young team that will only continue to get better throughout the season.
7. Harvard (7-2, 3-1 EIVA)
Last week’s results: defeated Penn State and St. Francis
You can call Harvard’s win against Penn state a fluke, but you’d be wrong. The Crimson with All-EIVA outside attacker DJ White in the lineup have enough talent to win the EIVA.
8. Penn State (10-3, 4-1 EIVA)
Last week’s results: defeated Sacred Heart; lost to Harvard
Everyone will harp on the loss to Harvard, but let’s give Penn State and coach Mark Pavlik their due credit. A 61-match conference winning streak is a feat we may never see again in college men’s volleyball.
9. Lewis (9-5, 5-0 MIVA)
Last week’s results: defeated Loyola
Lewis’ Harlem Shake video that it produced last week was not as good its in-state rival Loyola’s Harlem Shake video. Music videos aside, Lewis is starting to look like a Final Four team after its early season struggles.
10. Cal State Northridge (7-5, 5-5 MPSF)
Last week’s results: defeated Pacific and lost to Stanford
The Matadors won’t blow any team away this season, but they continue to win the matches they are suppose to win and occasionally can pull the upset.
ON THE BUBBLE
UCLA — I had to submit my ballot before UCLA’s victory against rival USC on Monday night. The Bruins seem to be turning around their season after struggling the last few weeks.