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.

Penn State’s Goodell develops into leadership role
Garrett Ross | The Daily Collegian
Whether it is coming up with creative celebrations for his kills or joking around with teammates, Penn State outside attacker Nick Goodell is not afraid to have fun the court. This personality profile examines how Goodell has kept his sense of humor this season while emerging as one of the team’s veteran leaders.

Ball State’s defense fuels success
David Polaski | The Ball State Daily News
Ball State clinched a home match and a top-four seed for the upcoming MIVA Tournament this weekend in large part because of its defense that is leading the conference in both blocks and digs. This news-feature story focuses on how coach Joel Walton has developed a defensive-orientated culture that his players have embraced.

UCLA suffers loss to Cal State Northridge
Claire Fahy | Daily Bruin
A good quote that the reporter places at the right spot in an article has the ability elevate the average game story. That is the case with this deadline game story following No. 9 UCLA’s upset loss to Cal State Northridge on Thursday as it uses a strong direct quote from opposite Spencer Rowe about the frustrations of losing to help bring the reader into the rest of the story.

Opposing coaches, players praise Rec Hall atmosphere
Garrett Ross | The Daily Collegian
Penn State picked up critical conference home victories last week against Princeton and George Mason to remain both in first place in the EIVA and undefeated at home this season. This news-feature focuses on how the Nittany Lions fans and the game-day atmosphere at Penn State’s home court of Rec Hall contributed to the team’s two victories.

Depth of players assists in UCLA season
Leonardo Villalobos | Daily Bruin
Freshman setter Jake Reeves went from sitting on the sidelines expecting to redshirt this season to being thrown into starting lineup in the final weeks of the regular season because of injuries. This news-feature how Reeves has adjusted to his new role and how the Bruins are coping with all their injuries.