Nov. 6 Volleyball Notebook & Statistics
Nov. 6, 2012
Irving, Texas - Conference USA volleyball heads into its final weekend of action prior to the 2012 C-USA Championship. Five of the eight spots for the tournament have been locked up but six teams - Houston, Marshall, Memphis, SMU, Southern Miss and Tulane - will be fighting for the final three seeds this weekend.
Two-time defending champion Tulsa and Rice locked up their berth two weeks ago while UAB, UCF and UTEP did so last weekend.
The Blazers (18-12, 10-4) recently saw their nine-match winning streak end against Tulsa. That loss was the only one for the month of October for UAB, who sits in third place in the standings. The Blazers trail only Rice (18-10, 11-3) and Tulsa (19-9, 12-2) in the conference.
UCF and UTEP have identical 9-5 records in C-USA action and are the only two teams to have defeated the Golden Hurricane this season.
UCF (12-14, 9-5) is winners of five of its last six and seven of its last nine matches after a rocky September. The Knights rank fourth in the league in kills (12.86) and assists (12.06) per set.
UTEP is also among the best in Conference USA statistically, placing first in hitting percentage (.239), while ranking second in blocks (2.44), third in assists (12.16) and kills per set (13.21). The Miners ended their home stand strong, winning eight of its last nine matches and posting an 8-4 record in El Paso.
Highlighting this weekend's matches will be the showdown between the top two teams - Tulsa and Rice. Both teams control their own destiny as Tulsa owns a one-match advantage over the Owls. A Friday night Rice win would force a tie atop the C-USA standings with one match remaining. The Golden Hurricane defeated the Owls in five sets in Houston on Sept. 30 and can clinch its fourth C-USA regular season crown with a victory .
Tulsa leads the league in kills (14.35), assists (13.31), digs (17.76) per set and opponent hitting percentage, holding teams to a .173 clip. Rice ranks second in the conference in hitting efficiency (.231), kills (14.12), assists (13.29) and digs (17.13) as well as third in blocks (2.27) per set. Both programs rank among the NCAA Top 50 in kills, assists and digs.
The Golden Hurricane will host championship action from Nov. 16-18 at the Reynolds Center. Rice won the last C-USA tournament title in 2009, the school's first conference volleyball championship. First round action tips off Friday, Nov. 16, followed by the semifinals on Saturday, Nov. 17 and the championship match is set for Sunday, Nov. 18 live on CBS Sports Network at 1 p.m. CT.
Sun., Nov. 11
C-USA VOLLEYBALL TIE-BREAKER PROCEDURES
*If real time NCAA RPI information is available, RPI will replace the coin toss criteria.