Conversations with Big Ten coaches have had one common theme heading into the start of conference play: No one has any idea where his/her team, or any of their fellow members, will end up in the title race come the end of November. The Big Ten has been the strongest conference in the nation over the past few seasons, but in a year that has witnessed the league set a new NCAA record for teams in the Top 25 (9), the Big Ten’s coaches are hesitant to make any predictions.
Defending Big Ten champion Penn State was chosen as the conference favorite for the 2013 season, as voted on by the Big Ten coaches, it was announced Friday. Earning the conference’s automatic berth to the NCAA Championship last season, the Nittany Lions top the poll for the eighth time in the last nine seasons.
CHICAGO – BTN will provide extensive coverage of the 2013 Big Ten volleyball season, with more than 70 matches set to air on BTN, BTN2Go and the Big Ten Digital Network (BTDN). BTN’s volleyball lineup will feature a match on most Wednesday and Friday evenings through the beginning of November. All games will also be available on BTN2Go.
Six Big Ten women’s volleyball teams advanced to the round of 16 in the NCAA tournament and all six played Friday night. Both Penn State and Nebraska swept their opponents to advance to Saturday’s round while Minnesota and Michigan moved on by defeating Big Ten foes Purdue and Michigan State , respectively.
BTN2Go will provide live coverage of the three Big Ten teams that are hosting NCAA Women’s Volleyball Tournament action this weekend. Nebraska’s first-round match vs. Maryland-Eastern Shore (Thursday, 8 p.m. ET) and the potential second-round match against the winner of Kansas State/Northern Iowa (Friday, 8 p.m.ET) will be televised live by NET in Nebraska and streamed live on BTN2Go.
Seven Big Ten teams are headed to the postseason, tied for the most of any conference in the country. Three teams will host first and second round play this weekend including the number one overall seed, the Penn State Nittany Lions. It has been a grueling schedule for every conference team and now we get a chance to see if the parity of the Big Ten has prepared these squads to make deep runs in the NCAA Tournament.