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 regular season, Off the Block 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.


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

In many communities volleyball is a non-mainstream sport that has a niche following. One of the exciting things for reporters covering volleyball, though, is finding that interesting angle that could appeal to volleyball and non-volleyball fans.

Going beyond the box score 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.

Penn State reflects on historic winning streak
Jon Wheel | The Daily Collegian
Penn State had its NCAA record 61-match conference winning streak snapped as it lost to Harvard last week. This news-feature story looks at how the Nittany Lions players and coaches view the historic streak now that it’s over.

Historic win for Harvard
Megan Kaplon | Volleyball Magazine
Harvard’s sweep against No. 6 Penn State last week surprised a lot of people, but not Crimson head coach Brian Baise. This feature story looks at how Harvard was able to end the Penn State winning streak and how the coach has turned Harvard into one of the top teams in the EIVA.

Nittany Lions setters share bond
Darian Somers | The Daily Collegian
Penn State setter Taylor Hammond this season has developed a close relationship with his backup, freshman Zack Parik. This feature story discusses how the friendship on and off the court helped made both players better and how it benefits the Nittany Lions.

Yellow card helps Ohio State beat Ball State
Evan Barnum-Steggerda | The Ball State Daily News
No. 6 Ohio State defeated conference rival Ball State last week in part because of a controversial yellow card issued against Ball State with the fourth game tied at 23. This game story focuses on how the yellow card influenced the outcome of the match and the frustration Ball State had towards the official who issued the yellow card.

Penn State looks to capitalize at home before going on road
Darian Somers | The Daily Collegian
Penn State defeated George Mason and Princeton at home this weekend — the final home matches for the Nittany Lions until April. This preview story examines the importance for Penn State to win these two matches before starting its season-long road trip.