Pac-12 volleyball continues to dominate; Stanford is new No. 1

StanfordPhoto.com

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Pac-12 teams have steam-rolled the competition in the first two weeks of 2014, going 63-5 (.926), including 7-1 against ranked opponents, and the upcoming schedule does not seem to let up. Slated for this week are seven matches against ranked opponents, including road matches for No. 21 ARIZONA and No. 25 UCLA at No. 2 Texas and No. 22 Hawai’i, respectively, two of the toughest places to play in the country. OREGON and OREGON STATE host Big Ten foes Michigan and No. 23 Michigan State, in what is an on-going clash between the conferences. The Pac-12 has gained the upper hand going 6-2 against Big Ten teams so far this season ... The new No. 1 team in the country, STANFORD, will host No. 20 Duke, with fifth-ranked USC hosting No. 10 Florida this weekend, as well. WASHINGTON STATE will also take on No. 12 Illinois on a neutral court ... Seven Pac-12 teams are ranked in this week’s AVCA Coaches poll, tied for the most of any conference, including three in the top 10. The Cardinal takes over the top spot in the polling after defeating defending NCAA Champion and last week’s No. 1 team Penn State, followed by the No. 5 Huskies and No. 6 USC. The Sun Devils continue to climb in the poll, moving up to No. 15, and the Ducks slide up to No. 18 with the Wildcats moving up a couple of spots to No. 21. The Bruins make their season debut in the polls this season at No. 25 after picking up a win over then-No. 9 Illinois over the weekend. Additionally, CALIFORNIA and the Beavers are receiving votes ... Four matches will be televised on the Pac-12 Networks this week, with USC making two appearances, while the Sept. 12 tilts between UO/OSU and UM/MSU also televised on the Networks ... UCLA’s Karsta Lowe was named the Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week, while STANFORD’s Inky Ajanaku was tabbed the Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week for the second-straight week. OREGON’s Frankie Shebby was voted Pac-12 Freshman of the Week.

UPCOMING SCHEDULE

Tuesday, Sept. 9
Utah Valley at Utah, 7 p.m. MT

Thursday, Sept. 11
#25 UCLA vs. San Francisco (1), 5 p.m. HT
Texas A&M at #6 USC (2), 8 p.m. PT (P12N)
Seattle at #5 Washington (3), 7 p.m. PT

Friday, Sept. 12
#21 Arizona at #2 Texas (4), , 6 p.m. CT
#15 Arizona State vs. Louisville (5), 12 p.m. ET
#15 Arizona State vs. Northern Illinois (5), 5 p.m. ET
Pacific at California (6), 7 p.m. PT
Idaho State at Colorado (7), 7 p.m. MT
#23 Michigan State at #18 Oregon, 7:30 p.m. PT (P12N)
Michigan at Oregon State, 5:30 p.m. PT (P12N)
#20 Duke at #1 Stanford (8), 7 p.m. PT
#25 UCLA at #22 Hawai’i (1), 7:30 p.m. HT
#10 Florida at #6 USC (2), 7:30 p.m. PT (P12N)
Utah vs. East Tennessee State (9), 4 p.m. ET
UC Davis at #5 Washington (3), 1 p.m. PT
UNLV at #5 Washington (3), 7 p.m. PT
Washington State vs. Virginia Tech (10), 7:30 p.m. ET

Saturday, Sept. 13
#21 Arizona vs. Florida A&M (4), 9 a.m. CT
#21 Arizona vs. UCF (4), 4:30 p.m. CT
#15 Arizona State at Morehead State (5), 5 p.m. ET
Nevada at California (6), 10 a.m. PT
Robert Morris at Colorado (7), 12 p.m. MT
Butler at Colorado (7), 7:30 p.m. MT
Michigan at #18 Oregon, 7:30 p.m. PT
#23 Michigan State at Oregon State, 7:30 p.m. PT
Penn at #1 Stanford (8), 11 a.m. PT
Santa Clara at #1 Stanford (8), 7 p.m. PT
#25 UCLA vs. Utah State (1), 2 p.m. HT
Utah vs. Georgia Tech (9), 10 a.m. CT
Utah at Lipscomb (9), 6:30 p.m. CT
Washington State vs. Belmont (10), 10 a.m. ET
Washington State vs. #12 Illinois (10), 7:30 p.m. ET

Monday, Sept. 15
#18 Oregon at Portland State, 7 p.m. PT

1 - Outrigger Hotels and Resorts Volleyball Challenge, Honolulu, Hawai’i; 2 - USC Classic, Los Angeles, Calif.; 3 - Washington/Seattle U Tournament, Seattle, Wash.; 4 - University of Texas Tournament, Austin, Texas; 5 - Comfort Inn and Suites Invitational, Morehead, Ky.; 6 - Molten Classic, Berkeley, Calif.; 7 - Omni Invitational, Boulder, Colo.; 8 - Stanford Tournament, Stanford, Calif.; 9 - Lipscomb Invitational, Nashville, Tenn.; 10 - Middle Tennessee State Blue Raider Bash, Murfreesboro, Tenn. P12N - indicates Pac-12 Networks televised match

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