Showing posts from 2007

Ball, Stanley and Giba...

Russian League Match Comments Iskra Odintsovo vs. Dynamo Kazan Dinamo TTG Kazan Roster (wearing Blue) 1 - Lloy Ball (USA) 2 - Pavel Zaytsev 3 - Alexander Kosarev 5 - Alexander Bogomolov 7 - Alexey Bovduy 8 - Sergey Tetyukhin 9 - Artem Ermakov 11 - Nikolay Apalikov 13 - Clayton Stanley (USA) 14 - Andrey Egorchev 15 - Alexander Gerasimov 17 - Vladislav Babichev Iskra Odintsovo Roster (wearing Red ) 1 - Denis Kalinin 2 - Oleg Samsonychev 4 - Sergey Khoroshev 5 - Pavel Abramov 6 - Alexey Kuleshov 7 - Gilberto Godoy Filho (BRA) Giba 8 - Alexander Butko (BLR) 9 - Mikhail Beketov 10 - Jochen Schops (GER) 12 - Taras Khtey 16 - Anton Astashenkov 18 - Alexey Verbov The Russian national team libero #18-Alexey Verbov and #6-Alexey Kuleshov are on Iskra. I see both teams have Mizuno uniforms. I wonder if all teams in this league are wearing Mizuno? Set One Early on, Stanley starts with 3 hard serves followed by Giba returning three hard serves. Stanley and Ball hook up on the right side often. Init

Boy’s High School Volleyball Grows 16.2%

According to the National Federation of High Schools (NFHS) report released on September 5th, boy’s high school volleyball continued its growth pattern. During the 2006-2007 school year, the number of schools having boy’s volleyball programs grew from 1,726 schools to 2,006 schools, a 16.2% increase. The number of boys participating in boy’s high school volleyball grew from 42,878 to 46,224, an increase of 3,346 boys. The 46,224 participation number now exceeds the 1973-1974 numbers (43,050) and is the third highest rate since NFHS has collected and published the participation information. The NFHS results are based on figures from the 50 state high school athletic/activity associations, plus the District of Columbia that are members of the NFHS. The highest number of boys participating in high school volleyball according to NFHS records is 63,544 which occurred during the 1971-1972 school year. The following year, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX) legislation was

Men's News Tidbits

More AVCA/USAV Coaching Meeting Notes During the meeting that occurred during July (at the JO’s), the topic of raising the number of scholarship equivalents from 4.5 to 7 was discussed. The MPSF is working with their coaches and administrators to garner support. The next step would be to approach the NCAA. The MPSF members agreed to hold off raising the issue to the NCAA until AFTER the acceptance of expanding the NCAA Championship tournament from 4 teams to 8 teams. The Championship expansion issue is already in front of the NCAA. It was approved in concept but was not funded in the last budget cycle. Hopefully, it will get funded this year! NORCECA Continental Championships The US national team performed well, as expected, against the NORCEA teams during the championship. They captured the Gold Medal earning a spot in Novembers World Cup. The top 3 teams of the World Cup will earn a spot in the 2008 Olympics. They only lost two sets in the entire tournament. The sad thing is the atte

DI Schools Who Can Afford to Expand

In between the two four day sessions of the USAV Junior Olympic National Tournament held in Atlanta this past July, the AVCA and USAV held a coaches meeting on the status of men's and boy's volleyball. Several topics were discussed but I am going to focus on DI expansion during this post. Kathy DeBoer, AVCA Executive Director shared a report with the attendees that listed all the Division IA programs and their Title IX proportionality numbers. The list highlighted schools that had the potential to "overcome" the Title IX issue because they had a higher percentage of female athletes than the percentage of total female undergraduates. For example, the University of Cincinnati has a 50.5% female to male ratio of athletes but only a 47.3% female to male undergraduates ratio. In short, Cincinnati could add male athletes at the varsity level and not fail the Title IX test. Of course, Title IX is not the only reason for DI schools not sponsoring a varsity sport. There is alw

The Off Season

Thank goodness the national teams are active, otherwise this would be a very slow season for men's volleyball. I don't mind watching some AVP action but I have a strong preference for the 6 man indoor version of volleyball. Maybe it is because my age has caught up with me and covering the sand court with two people is totally exhausting for me (after only 3 or 4 rallies), :) The Men's National Team had a great World League tournament . It is good to see the USA back into the medals for an international tournament. Their "older" roster of players performed well against many of their competitors who were using younger, less-experienced players intentionally or due to injury. I think the momentum will boost their confidence as they enter the 2008 Olympic qualifying tournament rounds. It does worry me some that they still have to play some teams who will bring their experienced rosters to these tournaments and the Olympics. Only time will tell. A couple of months ago,

The Slow Time in Men's Volleyball (for most)

It has been a while since I created a post from scratch. The last three posts were actually articles I wrote while attending the World League matches here in Chicago. That is a story in itself, if I ever get around to it. Most players have either finished their high school and club team summer camps by now. There are a few weeks left before schools starts so players get to take some time off. The smart ones will find some friends and some sand to play some beach. Nothing like sand to improve your ball handling and your leg strength. Some areas have summer high school leagues where team members can get together to play other schools. This is usually a very casual league with teams sometimes having problems getting enough players (6) to play due to work, summer school and vacations. In Illinois, the high school coach cannot be in attendance at these matches so it is usually self-coached. A few players are playing on the Junior, Youth and High Performance camps and associated tournaments.

Investing In The Future

I am capturing this article in my blog since I will eventually be moving the article off of the home page. In the post-match press conference after Team USA’s 3-0 World League victory over Italy, there were several discussions by both coaches on the future of their teams. I thought I would share some of their thoughts and comments. Coach Gianpaolo Montali, the head coach of the Italian National Team took some time to discuss his philosophy for the 2007 World League competition. Coach Montali became the head coach in 2003 and his many accomplishments include the silver medal in the 2004 Athens Olympics. The Italian team currently has four experienced players who are recovering from injuries and did not travel with the team to the US. Players such as Luigi Mastrangelo (MH), Matej Cernic, and Alessandro Fei (MH) are expected to return to the team this fall. Although they may have missed some practice with the team, the Italians will be ready for 2008 Olympic qualification tournaments

USA Completes Sweep of Hobbled Italian Team, 3-0

I am capturing this article in my blog since I will eventually be moving the article off of the home page. The US National Team completed their home sweep of the Italians in World League play Saturday evening in front of 3,720 fans in Chicago. The scores were 25-19, 30-28 and 25-23. The Asics Junior National Championship tournament also being held in Chicago provided an additional source of fans from both local and out-of-town junior players and their parents. Pockets of junior players could be seen throughout the crowd, some still in their team uniform shirts. The Team USA starting rotation included three different players tonight compared to their starting rotation on Friday night’s match. Kevin Hansen, who saw action in the 4th set Friday night, was the starting setter Saturday. Tom Hoff, who occasionally subbed into Fridays match in a blocking role for a few plays, was one of the starting middles. Hoff replaced David Lee. Lastly, Clay Stanley who was only used as a serving speciali

USA Looks Strong Against Young Italian Team During FIVB World League Chicago Opener

I am capturing this article in my blog since I will eventually be moving the article off of the home page. USA Volleyball has strongly encouraged me to write an article about my coverage of the match. For what it is worth, here is my first ever match coverage… Tonight’s match was held at the Emil and Patricia Jones Convocation Center at Chicago State University. The USA vs. Italy World League match was the first sporting event to be held in the brand new center. It has only been open for about a month and the only other use was for Chicago State’s recent graduation ceremony. The facility was beautiful and allowed one whole side of the court to be within feet of the action. The first two sets ended in the same score 25-21 USA. In the first set, it was 8-6 at the first time out. Reid Priddy delivered back-to-back aces to stretch the lead. The US maintained a steady 4 to 6 point lead throughout the rest of the match. Clay Stanley subbed in as a serving specialist at the 17-12 mark but no