Sept. 17, 2007
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Big Ten volleyball opens conference play this week, beginning with No. 9 Wisconsin at Illinois on Wednesday. The match will be televised live on the Big Ten Network at 7 p.m. CT.
Wisconsin and Illinois will play in the first volleyball match broadcast by the Big Ten Network on Wednesday at 7 p.m. CT at Huff Hall in Champaign. The Badgers will take part in the network's second volleyball broadcast when they head to Michigan to take on the Wolverines at 7 p.m. CT on Saturday. The Big Ten Network is scheduled to air over 20 volleyball matches throughout the course of the season. In addition, ESPN2 is slated to televise three regular-season matches in 2007.
Don Hardin won his 200th match as Illinois' head coach on Saturday as the Illini defeated Toledo, 3-1. With 392 wins in his career, Hardin is eight victories shy of 400. Also on Saturday, Mark Rosen won his 150th match with Michigan as the Wolverines defeated Georgia Tech, 3-2. Penn State's Russ Rose is one win shy of the 900 benchmark. With his next victory he will become just the third Division I coach in history to reach the milestone.
Michigan owns the second-longest unbeaten streak in the nation with a 12-0 record, sitting just behind 13-0 Dayton. The start is the second-best in school history, second only to last season's squad that started 13-0.
Stuffing the Competition
Heading into last weekend's competition, Big Ten teams and players were among the nation's best in blocks. Ohio State's Danielle Meyer averaged an NCAA-best 1.83 stuffs per game while the Buckeyes were tied for 26th in the country with a 3.06 bpg average. Minnesota sat second among all Division I schools with a 3.68 bpg mark while Penn State was seventh (3.48).
Each of the Big Ten's 11 teams is holding opponents to hitting percentages under .200, including Northwestern, who has held its opposition to a mere .105 mark. With a hitting clip of .343 and an opponents' average of .150, Penn State is out-hitting its opponents by nearly 200 points.
Big Ten Poll-ing Place
Three Big Ten teams sit in the nation's top 10 for the second-consecutive week in No. 3 Penn State, No. 9 Wisconsin and No. 10 Michigan. Minnesota follows at No. 12 while Ohio State comes in at No. 23. Purdue is receiving votes outside the top 25.