The top 5 college 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.

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.

Page digs out of tough spot to find volleyball success
Leonardo Villalobos | Daily Bruin
UCLA outside attacker Robart Page is among the nation’s leaders in kills, but the senior two years ago was on the verge of quitting volleyball and starting a college basketball career. This personality profile story examines Page’s challenging first two years with the Bruins and why he ultimately decided to stay with the team.

Ball State players juggle volleyball, homework
David Polaski | The Ball State Daily News
Ball State opening its season with multiple road trips has been additionally taxing on the players given some of their academic commitments. This news-feature story focuses on how Ball State handles playing weekend road matches and keeping up with their classes and course work.

Penn State blocking disparity does not slow winning streak
Garrett Ross | The Daily Collegian
Despite being out-blocked for the season, Penn State entered the week on a nation-best eight match winning streak and in first place in the EIVA. This news-feature story examines why coach Mark Pavlik is not concerned about his team’s blocking and how blocking stats in a box score can some times be deceiving.

UCLA hopes to offset first home loss
Leonardo Villalobos | Daily Bruin
UCLA coach John Speraw offered his players the incentive of having clean laundry for a week if they defeated Long Beach State and Cal State Northridge. This weekend preview story looks at how the team wasn’t able to earn the incentive with a loss to Long Beach State on Wednesday but in the process found its new starting setter.

Players tell all: acing BYU Crushes
Sarah Ballard | The Universe
Give a reporter credit for creativity and doing a lighthearted article. This feature story looks at how the popular Cougar players handle getting hit-on by individuals through the Facebook page BYU Crushes. In addition, the reporter incorporates an online video interview with the players to help advance the story.