Nov. 26, 2006
2006 NCAA Championship Bracket in PDF Format
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PARK RIDGE, Ill. - The NCAA Division I Women's Volleyball Committee announced Sunday that seven Big Ten teams were among the 64-team field selected for the 2006 NCAA Division I Women's Volleyball Championship. Big Ten champion Penn State earned the conference's automatic berth after an 18-2 season in Big Ten play, while Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Ohio State, Purdue and Wisconsin all earned at-large invitations. Five Big Ten squads earned top-16 seeds, with the Nittany Lions earning the third seed overall. Minnesota is seeded eighth, followed by No. 10 Wisconsin, No. 11 Ohio State and No. 14 Purdue. Penn State is one of just three teams (Stanford, UC Santa Barbara) to have earned bids to all 26 championships.
Penn State (29-2, 18-2 Big Ten) enters the NCAA Championship as the lone Big Ten team to win four-straight outright conference championships. The fifth-ranked Nittany Lions are one of three conference teams hosting first- and second-round competition. Penn State opens against Long Island (25-10) on Friday, Dec. 1, at 7:30 p.m. ET at Rec Hall. With a victory, PSU would face the winner of Cornell (18-8) and Hofstra (23-6) on Saturday, Dec. 2 at 7 p.m. ET. The Nittany Lions reached the national championship match in three consecutive tournaments from 1997-1999. The last time Penn State went undefeated in league play was in 1999 and went on to capture the Big Ten's only national title.
No. 8 seed Minnesota (23-7, 17-3) will head to Albany, N.Y., to face Siena (22-12) on Thursday, Nov. 30 at 6 p.m. ET. The Golden Gophers, who are making their 12th NCAA Championship appearance, have advanced to the national semifinals two of the past three seasons and were the national runner-up in 2004. Should Minnesota defeat Siena, the Golden Gophers would face the victor of host Albany (19-12) and St. John's (30-4) on Friday at 7 p.m.
No. 10 seed Wisconsin (24-6, 16-4) plays host to Notre Dame (18-13) at 7 p.m. CT on Friday, following the Iowa State (20-10) and UW-Milwaukee (24-5) matchup. The 11th-ranked Badgers, who make their 15th overall and 11th consecutive appearance in the NCAAs, would play on Saturday at 7 p.m. with a win over the Fighting Irish on Friday.
Ohio State (23-7, 13-7), seeded 11th and ranked 19th nationally, is paired with Penn State and Purdue in the Seattle (Wash.) Regional. The Buckeyes travel to Louisville, Ky., to open against Belmont (24-6) at 5 p.m. ET on Friday. With a victory, OSU, which makes its 15th overall NCAA appearance, would face the winner of Middle Tennessee (26-7) and Louisville (25-6) on Saturday. The Buckeyes have advanced to regional play nine times and was a participant in the national semifinals in 1991 and 1994.
No. 14 seed Purdue (21-10, 11-9), ranked 22nd nationally, earned its third NCAA berth in as many years and the 10th in the program's 31-year history. The Boilermakers will host St. Louis (22-8) at 7 p.m. ET on Thursday in West Lafayette, Ind., in a match that follows Ohio (28-4) and Kentucky (18-11). The winners of the first-round matches will meet in a 7 p.m. Friday contest.
Michigan (21-12, 8-12) earned its sixth bid to the tournament in the last eight seasons and the third in past five years. The Wolverines will travel to San Luis Obispo, Calif., to face 15th-seeded Cal Poly (22-5) in the first round at 8 p.m. PT on Friday. A victory for the Maize and Blue would earn them a battle with the winner of California (20-9) and LSU (26-5) in the second round at 7 p.m. on Saturday.
Earning its 11th overall selection, Michigan State (19-11, 10-10) will travel to Los Angeles, Calif, to battle unseeded Utah (27-3) on Friday at 5:30 p.m. PT. Host UCLA (29-3), which received the No. 4 seed overall, will face UAB (27-9) in first-round play. The winner of the two matches will face each other on Saturday at 7 p.m. The Spartans, coached by second-year mentor Cathy George, return to national stage for the first time since making 10 consecutive appearances in from 1994-2003. During that time, MSU made one appearance in the national semifinal (1995) and two showings in the regional round (1996, 2002).
Teams winning both matches will move on to regional play Dec. 8 and 9. The pre-determined regional sites (including selected Big Ten teams) are Austin, Texas (Michigan, Wisconsin); Gainesville, Fla. (Minnesota); Honolulu, Hawaii (Michigan State); and Seattle, Wash. (Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue). The regional winners will advance to the semifinals and final hosted by Nebraska at the Qwest Center in Omaha, Neb., on Dec.14 and 16.
First- and second-round matches will be played at 16 campus sites. A list of the first-round match-ups follows.
GAINESVILLE, FLA. REGIONAL
December 1-2 at Omaha, Neb.
Nebraska (27-1) vs. American (25-6)
Winthrop (34-2) vs. UNI (27-7)
December 1-2 at Knoxville, Tenn.
Tennessee (19-11) vs. Duke (28-3)
Jacksonville St. (24-4) vs. San Diego (24-5)
November 30- December 1 at Gainesville, Fla.
Florida (28-2) vs. Florida A&M (21-6)
Col. of Charleston (27-7) vs. Arizona St. (15-14)
November 30- December 1 at Albany, N.Y.
St. John's (N.Y.) (30-4) vs. Albany (N.Y.) (19-12)
Siena (22-12) vs. Minnesota (23-7)
HONOLULU, HAWAII REGIONAL
November 30- December 1 at Los Angeles, Calif.
Southern California (25-4) vs. Mississippi (19-12)
UC Santa Barb. (19-11) vs. Brigham Young (24-5)
December 1-2 at Long Beach, Calif.
Pepperdine (16-11) vs. Long Beach St. (25-5)
Oregon (17-11) vs. Hawaii (26-5)
December 1-2 at Fayetteville, Ark.
Oklahoma (26-5) vs. Oral Roberts (26-8)
Missouri St. (26-8) vs. Arkansas (16-12)
December 1-2 at Los Angeles, Calif.
Utah (27-3) vs. Michigan St. (19-11)
UAB (27-9) vs. UCLA (29-3)
SEATTLE, WASH. REGIONAL
December 1-2 at State College, Pa.
Penn St. (29-2) vs. Long Island (25-10)
Cornell (18-8) vs. Hofstra (23-6)
November 30- December 1 at West Lafayette, Ind.
Kentucky (18-11) vs. Ohio (28-4)
St. Louis (22-8) vs. Purdue (21-10)
December 1-2 at Louisville, Ky.
Ohio St. (23-7) vs. Belmont (24-6)
Middle Tenn. (26-7) vs. Louisville (25-6)
November 30- December 1 at Boulder, Colo.
Colorado (16-11) vs. New Mexico St. (33-3)
Colorado St. (20-9) vs. Washington (25-4)
AUSTIN, TEXAS REGIONAL
December 1-2 at Austin, Texas
Texas (21-6) vs. Prairie View (23-10)
Stephen F. Austin (30-3) vs. Alabama (17-12)
December 1-2 at Madison, Wis.
Iowa St. (20-10) vs. Wis.-Milwaukee (24-5)
Notre Dame (18-13) vs. Wisconsin (24-6)
December 1-2 at San Luis Obispo, Calif.
Cal Poly (22-5) vs. Michigan (21-12)
California (20-9) vs. LSU (26-5)
December 1-2 at Stanford, Calif.
Missouri (17-12) vs. Santa Clara (20-7)
Sacramento St. (30-5) vs. Stanford (25-3)