E Point U!(betcha)
Newsletter of the University of Minnesota Golddiggers Booster Club
Volume 2011 Issue 8
November 30, 2011
What a great time of year. I absolutely love NCAA Tournament time. The Selection Show, the preparation, the match – ups, the matches, and the possibilities provide a continual rush of positive emotions. For the staff, it is the holidy between Thanksgiving and Christmas!
We started the season with the mantra…Begin With the End in Mind. Everyday, every touch of the volleyball, every workout, every match preparation had the end in mind…we still have the End in Mind. What does it take to get to the Final Four and in the NCAA Championship match?
- Be physically healthy – we have done that. Like every team during this part of the season there are aches and pains along with an excessive accumulation of athletic tape, braces, and joint support. We plan to remain physically healthy..
- Mental preparation – simply stated the team who is always competing for the end prize does the best in this tournament. The team who is happy to be invited or playing not to lose does not fare well. For us, we are looking at each weekend like having to compete against the best in the Big Ten on back – to – back nights. No one gets the luxury of shrinking from the competition – competitiveness greatness and competitive maturity are important.
- NCAA Seed – we earned an overall 13 seed. We knew that with a top 16 seed we would host a subregional and be placed in the Minneapolis Regional regardless of the seed. Competing at home has alot of advantages. We need to take advantage of our advantages.
- Keep your house in order – eliminate distractions which hinder performance. Make your life simple by taking care of what you need to take care of: classes, school work, sleeping, eating, improving, social life, aches/pains, etc…
- Preparation – know yourself and know the game plan. Most importantly, compete to win.
Looking forward to seeing all of you Friday at the Pavilion.
From the Golddiggers’ President
It’s the most wonderful time of the year! The NCAA volleyball tournament is upon us and will be in the Pav!
All volleyball is great but having the Gophers home for the tournament is something special. Fans from all teams come in, there is a special excitement in the area, and fun, exciting volleyball is on tap.
The team has worked hard to gain a seed in this year’s tournament and it is great to see them rewarded. And we get to share in that reward. Lucky us!
But, we need to make sure the Pav is a home court advantage for the Gophers. We need to be out in force and in voice. We owe it our players, and the opposition, to provide the atmosphere worthy of a major event.
So, clear your schedules, grab your friends, and come out to enjoy some great volleyball!
…..I’ll see you at the Pav!
Larry Mickelson, President, Golddiggers
We will be holding a post-match reception on Saturday night if the Gophers are involved in that match.
Remember… to comply with NCAA rules, the post-match receptions are limited to Golddigger members, and their invited guests. Guests must also pay a “nominal fee” ($3 per person) to attend.
There will NOT be a chalk talk this week.
POTENTIAL TRAFFIC ISSUES ON MATCH NIGHTS!
We are getting into that time of the year where there are multiple sporting events going on around the Pavilion. Here is a list of dates on which there will be other sporting events in addition to home (or potential) volleyball matches:
- Friday, December 2 – Men’s hockey at 7:00 (first round of NCAA VB tourney)
- Saturday, December 3 – Men’s hockey at 7:00 (second round of NCAA VB tourney)
- Friday, December 9 – Men’s hockey at 7:00 (NCAA VB regionals 5:00 and 7:00)
- Saturday, December 10 – Women’s BB at 4:00; Men’s hockey at 7:00 (NCAA regional final, time TBD)
Be sure to plan your travel appropriately!
FREE AUDIO WEBCASTS OF GOPHER MATCHES
Can’t make the away matches? Catch all the action via the free audio webscasts! Tom Witschen handles the play by play and does an outstanding job. We need to support this service so that it will continue in the future.
To find the link to the audio, go to the Gopher Volleyball Schedule on GopherSports, and click on the match in the schedule listing. You’ll see the details for that match to the right of the schedule listing.
As a potentially faster route, check out the Lots o’ Links section below. We’ve included a link to the site listing all of the Gopher webcast events. From there, you can select the appropriate match.
Let’s give a big hand to Tom W and Gopher Volleyball for making the audio broadcasts available! Point U!
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Your board of director officers are: Larry Mickelson (president), Betty Cipperly (Vice-President), Sharon Manninen (Secretary), and JT (Treasurer). Members at large are Nathan Agre, Dean Christensen, Lisa Dickman, Katie Harms, Lon Ortner, Hamlin Sjoberg, and DuAnn Thompson.
We would very much like to hear from YOU!
Gophers, out-of-town members, Hollywood celebrities — whomever — please email us at the address below, let us know what you are up to, pass on suggestions or questions for the Point U!(betcha), or hammer the coaching staff for their time-out usage — it’s up to you. The coaching staff has generously offered to answer questions submitted to them through this newsletter. We look forward to all your input.
Top 16 seeds in the tournament
- Texas – Champions of the Big Twelve. Lost starting MH Khat Bell three weeks ago. Will they be ready for back to back nights and a step up in competition, especially in the regionals. Although second round opponents, Michigan State or Arizona could challenge them, too.
- Nebraska – Big Ten champions. Loss to Northwestern in the final night of play may have cost them the overall #1 seed. Shouldn’t have too much trouble in the sub-regional but they are in the toughest regional in the tournament.
- Illinois – Big Ten runner-ups (tied). Benefited from the top RPI in the country. Will need to get more production from others besides senior OHs Ward and Bartsch.
- Iowa State - Third highest RPI gains ISU the four seed. A tough second round match (Miami, FL/Northern Illinois) awaits them.
- Purdue – Big Ten runner-up (tied) and a strong RPI for a team that made a deep run in the tournament last year.
- Northern Iowa – The Missouri Valley Conference champ, only loss was to Minnesota. They look to improve on their surprising first round exit last year. But Florida or Missouri (who did the knocking out last year) will await them in round two.
- USC – A surprise here as the Pac 12 champion is relegated to a 7 seed. A tough Oklahoma team could await them in the second round. In the toughest region in the tournament.
- Penn State – Tri Big Ten runner-up, Penn State may be peaking for another championship run. They have, by far, the easiest sub-regional in the tournament as the other three teams each have double digit losses.
- UCLA – An up and down team this year, the Pac 12 runner-up limps into the tournament losing three out of their last five matches. A second round match against either San Diego or Long Beach State could await the former number one ranked team.
- Hawaii – Hawaii fans were thrilled to know they would be hosting both a sub-regional and regional this year. Until they saw the draw. Oregon or Colorado State await them in the second round and they host the toughest regional in the tournament.
- Stanford – The Cardinal also come into the tournament a bit battered having lost their last match and three of the last five. But the do benefit from a somewhat favorable draw.
- Florida State – The ACC champs gain a seed on the basis of the 10th highest RPI. Not an overly difficult sub-region but Cincinnati could give them trouble in the second round.
- Minnesota – The Gophers look for consistency as they head into the tournament. A tough Washington team could await in the second round.
- Tennessee – The SEC champs have had a very strong year, defeating Florida twice this year. Ohio State could await in the second round.
- Pepperdine – The West Coast Conference champs could face Cal in the second round.
- Texas A&M – A surprise seed, come into the tournament having just beaten Iowa State. A second round opponent of either Dayton or Kentucky await. Win the sub-region and a match against Big 12 and in-state rival Texas could await.
Some random thoughts/questions on tournament:
- Iowa State the number 4 seed? Their signature win was over two months ago against a down Florida team.
- Pac 12 champion, USC, the number 7 seed? Going 20-2 in the Pac 12 isn’t as impressive as winning the Missouri Valley Conference or finishing second in the Big 12?
- Northern Iowa and USC should have been switched. Would have balanced out the brackets somewhat.
- Did Nebraska’s loss to Northwestern on the final night of the season cost them the top seed?
- The conference champions of the Big Ten, Pac 12, and Western Athletic Conference all in the same region?
- How does Penn State continue to get sub-regional opponents that won’t make them sweat?
- Meanwhile, Long Beach State and San Diego face each other in the opening round? One of them could have been flown to Happy Valley if for no other reason than to have Penn State have to actually be awake for the weekend.
- And, Michigan State and Arizona facing off in first round? At least it will be a more interesting match than American/Delaware.
- While the RPI can be used as a tool, it should not be the primary tool to determine seeds. It’s the lazy way out for the committee.
- It should be a wide open, fun, and exciting tournament!
Gopher tournament opponents
North Dakota State
Team Colors: Green and Gold
Conference: Summit League
Record: Overall 26-8 Conference 16-2 (season and tournament champions)
Record against NCAA tournament teams: 0-5
Losses: Missouri, Tulsa, Iowa State (2), Northern Iowa
How qualified: Summit League tournament champion
Last tournament appearance: 2010
Head Coach: Kari Thompson (First season, was the interim coach during last year’s tournament, Summit League Coach of the Year)
- Jennifer Lopez - senior setter (Summit League’s Player of the Year and Setter of the Year, former Miss Baden Volleyball Minnesota)
- Chrissy Knuth – senior MH
- Brynn Joki – junior OH
- Megan Lambertson – junior MH
Interesting fact: Six players are from Minnesota
Team Mascot: Broncos
Team Colors: Gold and Black
Conference: Mid-American Conference
Record: Overall 24-8 Conference 13-4
Record against NCAA tournament teams: 7-5
Wins: Liberty, Morehead State, Milwaukee, Central Michigan (2), Marquette, Ball State,
Losses: North Carolina, Ball State, Northern Illinois (2), Central Michigan
How qualified: At large
Last tournament appearance: 2008
Head Coach: Colleen Munson (7th season)
- Jessica Brown – junior MB
- Ali Gossen – sophomore OH
- Ashley Turnage – senior MB
- Terin Norris – freshman setter (MAC freshman of the year)
Interesting fact: Went to eight straight NCAA tournaments from 1982-1989
Team Mascot: Huskies
Team Colors: Purple and white
Conference: Pac 12
Record: Overall 23-7 Conference 15-7
Record against NCAA tournament teams: 6-7
Wins: Long Beach State, UCLA, Arizona (2), Oregon, Stanford
Losses: USC (2), Cal (2), Stanford, Oregon, UCLA
How qualified: At large
Last tournament appearance: 2010 (Elite Eight)
Head Coach: Jim McLaughlin (11th season)
- Krista Vansant – freshman OH
- Kylin Munoz – junior OH
- Lauren Barfield – senior MB
- Evan Sanders – senior setter
Interesting fact: This is the 10th straight NCAA tournament appearance for the Huskies. They won the title in 2005.
Big Ten Update
2011 Big Ten Volleyball Standings (final)
|6. Michigan State||10-10||.500||21-11||.656|
|7. Ohio State||9-11||.450||19-14||.576|
Lots o’ links
- http://www.gophersports.com/sports/w-volley/minn-w-volley-body.html (main VB site)
- http://client.stretchinternet.com/client/minnesota.portal# (Gopher webcasts)
Gopherhole (Gopher sports forum, need to search for the volleyball posts)
Big Ten Conference
Big Ten Network
- http://btn.com/sports/volleyball/ (main VB page)
- http://www.btn2go.com/btn2go/ (streaming video – you need to receive BTN via cable or satellite to access this)
- VolleyTalk – http://volleytalk.proboards35.com/index.cgi?board=general
- PrepVolleyball – http://prepvolleyball.yuku.com/forums/2
- YahooGroups BigTen VB – http://sports.groups.yahoo.com/group/bigtenvb/
RichKern.com (includes websites, scores, recruits, etc.)
Some features at this site now require registration/subscription.
- Main Page – http://www.richkern.com
- D-I School Websites – http://www.richkern.com/vb/websites/SchoolByConf.asp?Div=DI (premium)
- D-I Scores – http://www.richkern.com/vb/GameScores/indexsub.asp?Div=DI
- D-I Recruiting (2012) – http://www.richkern.com/vb/recruits/index.asp
- CBS Sports Network – http://www.cbssportsnetwork.com/
- BigTen Network (VB) – http://www.bigtennetwork.com/subindex/sports/volleyball
Questions/comments/suggestions/pastries are welcome. Please address them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our mission “statement”? To support Gopher volleyball and have fun doing it!