Men’s volleyball bracketology

The postseason is here, but nothing is decided for the four-team NCAA Tournament field as Selection Sunday is less than two weeks away.

The men’s volleyball NCAA Tournament is comprised of four teams. Automatic bids are awarded to the winners of the EIVA, MIVA and MPSF conference tournaments, and the NCAA Men’s Volleyball National Committee chooses one team for an at-large bid.


The three-person men’s volleyball committee typically meets following all of the conference tournaments to select the at-large team and the tournament seeding. For an in-depth look at the criteria used by the selection committee, check out this breakdown.

Off the Block since starting its bracketology in 2011 has accurately projected every team in the NCAA Tournament and all the semifinal matches.

The men’s volleyball championship tournament has remained a four-team field since the sport became NCAA sanctioned in 1970.

In recent years, though, there has been a growing possibility of the NCAA Tournament expanding. This also might become more likely with the Conference Carolinas qualifying for an automatic bid to the tournament starting in 2014.

As a result of this potential tournament format change in future years, Off the Block will also project this year’s NCAA Tournament if it expanded to eight teams with four automatic conference bids and four at-large bids.

The NCAA Tournament will take place May 2-4 at UCLA.

PROJECTED FINAL FOUR
No. 1 seed BYU (22-4) vs. No. 4 seed Penn State (19-7)
No. 2 seed UC Irvine (22-6)* vs. No. 3 seed Ball State (20-5)


LAST FOUR OUT
Long Beach State (22-7)
UCLA (20-10)
Loyola (19-9)
Lewis (19-9)

Quick breakdown: Ball State made the biggest jump in this week’s bracketology after beating Lewis and Loyola last week and is now projected to make the Final Four for the first time this season. However, for Ball State to make the Final Four it will likely have to beat Loyola and Lewis on the road in the MIVA Tournament. In addition, UC Irvine continues to hold a slight lead over Long Beach State for the lone at-large bid entering the MPSF Tournament.

IF NCAA TOURNAMENT EXPANDED TO 8 TEAMS
No. 1 seed BYU (22-4) vs. No. 8 seed Pfeiffer (17-8)
No. 2 seed UC Irvine (22-6)* vs. No. 7 seed Loyola (19-9)*
No. 3 seed Long Beach State (22-7)* vs. No. 6 seed Penn State (19-7)
No. 4 seed UCLA (20-10)* vs. No. 5 seed Ball State (20-5)

LAST FOUR OUT
Lewis (19-9)
Pepperdine (14-11)
Ohio State (19-7)
Stanford (15-12)

Quick breakdown: Lewis’ two loses last week and an injury to its All-American setter BJ Boldog has knocked the Flyers out of the projected NCAA Tournament field for the first time this season. The two new additions to the field this week is Ball State, which is on a nation-best 12-match winning streak, and Pfeiffer after the Falcons won the Conference Carolinas championship.

*Indicates at-large bid