Gopher Volleyball 2022 Season


walleye

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Disappointing that they didn't play better and at least win a set. However, Ohio St. is a very elite team. On the plus side, the Gophers did not get blown out in any set and the score was closer each set--this indicates that they did not quit and were trying hard through the match.
 

Ignatius L Hoops

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Our middles struggled (we saw Davis enter the match) and Landfair couldn't get rolling. Taylor hitting .027 isn't going to get it done against OSU.
 

skiumah1

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We seem like an athletic team, but definitely not the most fundamentally sound.
 

WayOfTheGopher

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Losing is never fun, but against a team like OSU who's been trending upwards ever since they hired JFO it's understandable. I'll start panicking when we start getting pushed by the likes of Iowa, Indiana and Rutgers.
 


Hrothgar

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A lot of fans there were probably expecting a great match, instead had to witness that. Gophers we're the inferior team and it showed
Gophers looked sluggish, so slow to start their offense that everyone in the Pav, esp. OSU, knew where each play was going before it started. Gophers hit soft mid-court serves in clear contrast to OSU's crisp serves that went deep in the opponents' court. A team with so much talent should be rising in the BIG, not sinking
 

ClassOf98Gopher

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A team with so much talent should be rising in the BIG, not sinking
I guess my point is that isn’t there about 5 teams in the Big Ten with “so much talent” just like the Gophers and then another 5 teams or so with quite a lot of talent?
 

Hrothgar

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I guess my point is that isn’t there about 5 teams in the Big Ten with “so much talent” just like the Gophers and then another 5 teams or so with quite a lot of talent?
I guess my point is: What are the Gophers doing with the purported "so much talent"? Getting swept multiple times on their home court and giving up a 2-1 lead against NW. Even to a VB novice like me, the team appears too slow to match the quick-twitch reactions of opponents, who serve harder and move faster.
 

ClassOf98Gopher

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Even to a VB novice like me, the team appears too slow to match the quick-twitch reactions of opponents, who serve harder and move faster.
Now this is interesting!

I too consider myself a volleyball novice, but I think that we do seem both taller than we have been in years, but I agree with Hrothgar that we also seem to be noticeably slower. Team height is up but team speed seems to be down.

For years I thought we maybe needed more height to match some of our opponents. But now I am unsure that is quite right.

I don’t know what the answer is on the speed versus height question. Thoughts?
 



Hrothgar

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Now this is interesting!

I too consider myself a volleyball novice, but I think that we do seem both taller than we have been in years, but I agree with Hrothgar that we also seem to be noticeably slower. Team height is up but team speed seems to be down.

For years I thought we maybe needed more height to match some of our opponents. But now I am unsure that is quite right.

I don’t know what the answer is on the speed versus height question. Thoughts?
I only have a tennis analogy. You're only as good as your serve. A hard, deep serve allows the server to take control of the point. A short, soft serve allows the receiver to gain control of the point. OSU's serves were hard & deep. MN's soft serves consistently came in short about mid-court. MN started every receiving point from deep in their court & then had to work their way forward laboriously. OSU received a short powder-puff MN serve, one quick pass, and OSU were immediately attacking at the net, no sweat. MN's block & back-court defense is constantly at the mercy of the team's weak serving. Correct me, please, if I'm wrong.
 

gwbbfan82

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I only have a tennis analogy. You're only as good as your serve. A hard, deep serve allows the server to take control of the point. A short, soft serve allows the receiver to gain control of the point. OSU's serves were hard & deep. MN's soft serves consistently came in short about mid-court. MN started every receiving point from deep in their court & then had to work their way forward laboriously. OSU received a short powder-puff MN serve, one quick pass, and OSU were immediately attacking at the net, no sweat. MN's block & back-court defense is constantly at the mercy of the team's weak serving. Correct me, please, if I'm wrong.
Excellent analogy!
 

4EverAGopher

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After the Ohio State sweep on our court, the unpredictable Gopher Volleyball season continues with Illinois in town next. I would not be surprised if we lose against Illinois. They are a well coached team who took Wisconsin to 5 sets on their home court. They also beat NW in 3 sets and played Purdue really tough.

Any team that serves us tough has a chance of winning. Ohio State had a great game plan coming into the match, adjusted when they had to and executed that plan for the win. Kilkelly will continue to be the opponent's seving target.

Expect the lineup not to change for this match. Also expect OOS volleyball to continue with too many variables playing a role in that....three Freshmen starters-Middle transfer starter-Wenaas on the RS where she has never played-three well experienced starters not playing consistently up to their ability. Unfotunately, we are not a cohesive team and we are playing like that.
 

maroonfive

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We are sliding further and further into mediocrity. We are turning into that also ran program.
 




ClassOf98Gopher

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Even with this latest loss, the Gophers are still #9 in the latest unofficial RPI rankings. So maybe "mediocrity" is a bit of an overstatement, even if you meant that we're just approaching mediocrity.
Overstatement? On a sportsfanatics’ message board? It can’t be true.
 

4EverAGopher

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As much as I love this sport and was thrilled to see Hugh become our HC, I have such a hard time understanding some of his decisions. Maybe they are based on scholarship availability. If that is the bottom line case, he IMO needs to correct this by next season.

The back court is where every play starts. We have lost three DS/L players during these COVID seasons for various reasons, as I stated in a previous post.

I really want to know why he never went to the TRANSFER PORTAL and brought in at least one other EXPERIENCED/TALENTED DS. Some other teams have 3-4 on their rosters. Maybe he has been counting too heavily on his 6R pins.

CC and Kilkelly's play this season so far has not been where it needs to be. Apparently, Gray is not the answer or she would have been substituted in at some point this season for Kilkelly.

I have watched a little of Choboy and she certainly has a high ceiling for the Libero position. She brings ton of energy and can read the play really well. She covers a lot of the court.

Will Hugh turn the DS/L positions around next season? I SURE HOPE SO.
 
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ClassOf98Gopher

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As much as I love this sport and was thrilled to see Hugh become our HC, I have such a hard time understanding some of his decisions. Maybe they are based on scholarship availability. If that is the bottom line case, he IMO needs to correct this by next season.

The back court is where every play starts. We have lost three DS/L players during these COVID sesons for various reasons has I stated in a previous post.

I really want to know why he never went to the TRANSFER PORTAL and brought in at least one other EXPERIENCED/TALENTED DS. Some other teams have 3-4 on their rosters. Maybe he has been counting too heavily on his 6R pins.

CC and Kilkelly's play this season so far has not been where it needs to be. Apparently, Gray is not the answer or she would have been substituted in at some point this season for Kilkelly.

I have watched a little of Choboy and she certainly has a high ceiling for the Libero position. She brings ton of energy and can read the play really well. She covers a lot of the court.

Will Hugh turn the DS/L positions around next season? I SURE HOPE SO.
All these decisions are scholarship decisions.

We have scholarship athlete Choboy coming in next year that they need a place for her. All teams are a mix of scholarship and non-scholarship players so as to make the roster math work… in the current year and in near-future years.

I think you answered your own question/assertion.
 

WayOfTheGopher

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Even with this latest loss, the Gophers are still #9 in the latest unofficial RPI rankings. So maybe "mediocrity" is a bit of an overstatement, even if you meant that we're just approaching mediocrity.
What sucks is that after the first round, we're probably going to Texas or Louisville.
 

Ewert86PC

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Losing is never fun, but against a team like OSU who's been trending upwards ever since they hired JFO it's understandable. I'll start panicking when we start getting pushed by the likes of Iowa, Indiana and Rutgers.
It may be understandable, but we need to be the better team and knock the teams "trending upwards" back down. Otherwise, we lose which means we are trending downwards into the likes of Iowa, Indiana and Rutgers.
 

ClassOf98Gopher

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It may be understandable, but we need to be the better team and knock the teams "trending upwards" back down. Otherwise, we lose which means we are trending downwards into the likes of Iowa, Indiana and Rutgers.
Well, all of us authentically “want” the Gophers to be the better team and forever and for-always knock the teams trending upwards back down. I am 100 percent on-board with that.

What I don’t agree with this is that the Gophers, true to the definition of the word, “need” to do so as if there is some intrinsic entitlement to the Gophers now and forevermore being in the top 3-4 of the Big Ten.

All that being said, I do expect us to continue to end up in or very near that highest class of teams this year and well into the future; just as we have been for many years in the past. We have the coaches and the players to be in that top group in the Big Ten, which is pretty lucky for us.
 

Ewert86PC

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Well, all of us authentically “want” the Gophers to be the better team and forever and for-always knock the teams trending upwards back down. I am 100 percent on-board with that.

What I don’t agree with this is that the Gophers, true to the definition of the word, “need” to do so as if there is some intrinsic entitlement to the Gophers now and forevermore being in the top 3-4 of the Big Ten.

All that being said, I do expect us to continue to end up in or very near that highest class of teams this year and well into the future; just as we have been for many years in the past. We have the coaches and the players to be in that top group in the Big Ten, which is pretty lucky for us.
If you believe in the University of Minnesota and what it stands for, then "need" is the right word. Athletic excellence brings funds to the University, along with that come academic funds because of the awareness of the University. It seems illogical, but it based on what "the money" is drawn towards and sadly it is not primarily academics.

I attended the U when academic idealism reigned and athletics were maligned. The money dried up during that time. Alumni stopped being proud of their school and curtailed contributions. Athletics have come back and with that alumni money has started coming back.

We need to be in the top 3-4 of athletics in the conference to show alumni a communal sense of pride in the University. That communal sense of pride is the conduit through which money comes back to the University.
 

Hrothgar

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Even with this latest loss, the Gophers are still #9 in the latest unofficial RPI rankings. So maybe "mediocrity" is a bit of an overstatement, even if you meant that we're just approaching mediocrity.
Instead of 'overstatement' I'd suggest 'understatement.' The programs I follow, women's softball & volleyball, have clearly fallen off in W-L records the past 3-4 years. From ascending steadily toward the top in the BIG & nationwide, both programs have shown increasingly disappointing, sometimes head-scratching results. Championship teams almost never lose to teams they they should beat.
 


WayOfTheGopher

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Didn't catch much of the first set, surprised to see Gray in set two and then switched back to CC in the third. Serve receive still needs work, but was helped out by Illinois errors. Should be a easy midweek match-up with Iowa before facing Purdue at the Pav.
 

Ignatius L Hoops

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Didn't catch much of the first set, surprised to see Gray in set two and then switched back to CC in the third. Serve receive still needs work, but was helped out by Illinois errors. Should be a easy midweek match-up with Iowa before facing Purdue at the Pav.
McGraw took a shot to the face and left the match in the first set probably for concussion protocal. Gray replaced McGraw for the remaining points of the set. Kilkelly then took over the libero spot in the second set. McGraw returned later in the second set.

Our block was not imposing; but the offense was nicely spread amongst the middles and outsides. It was good to see Wenaas with a solid outing.
 

4EverAGopher

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Really nice to win, but today Illinois beat themselves with so many errors. Again, the same issues were there for the Gophers....passing/receiving/setting/blocking.

We have several Freshmen who play like Freshmen, but all have a tremendous upside to their game. Now it is just the opposite for our experienced starters who are not playing up to what WE THINK their skill level should be. Thus we are getting a Jekyll or Hyde performance from our Gophers.

We Gopher fans just cannot set expectations that high this season or we will become more disappointed. While moving forward, we have to hope more teams play like Illinois did today.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT.....I remember Hugh saying one time many seasons ago that some recruits just don't play at the level of their ranking.
 
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ClassOf98Gopher

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FOOD FOR THOUGHT.....I remember Hugh saying one time many seasons ago that some recruits just don't play at the level of their ranking.

This! This! 1000 times this!

4eEverAGopher is exactly right. Fans need to accept this reality.
 

Ignatius L Hoops

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Minnesota's next opponent, Iowa, lost at home to Penn State in five sets. The fifth set was 15-13. The Gophers travel to Coralville next Wednesday.
 

Hrothgar

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Minnesota's next opponent, Iowa, lost at home to Penn State in five sets. The fifth set was 15-13. The Gophers travel to Coralville next Wednesday.
Yes, and I believe PSU lost in a sweep to Nebraska, the 3rd set ending 25-9. How long has it been since Penn State beat Nebraska?
 

Ignatius L Hoops

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Yes, and I believe PSU lost in a sweep to Nebraska, the 3rd set ending 25-9. How long has it been since Penn State beat Nebraska?
The last Penn State win was October 2018 in Happy Valley. Counting this season Nebraska has now won five straight. The last Penn State win in Lincoln was November 2013.
 




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