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@ Miami (OH) Preview #1
@ Miami (OH) Preview #1
Published by BeckysTXA
@ Miami (OH) Preview #1

Tuesday, September 3 @ 7 pm

Dayton plays Miami twice this year, which seems a little odd unless of course youíre figgie123, then you understand why. In volleyball, the NCAA awards a double bonus to your RPI calculation if 50% of your out-of-conference matches are against Top 75 RPI teams. Miami finished last year with an RPI of 65. They also won a high percentage of their matches, which also figures into the volleyball RPI. This is great scheduling for both programs. So the Flyers travel to Oxford on Tuesday to take on the Redhawks and then see them again at Ohio Stateís tournament 17 days later. This will be UDís fourth match in five days on their way to playing seven matches in nine days. That alone will make it interesting, but Dayton should win.

Head coach, Carolyn Condit, is in her 36th season at Miami and is the reigning Mid-American Coach of the Year. She has done a great job as evident by their back-to-back-to-back defending MAC Championships. There are high expectations again this year. They took care of business the first weekend defeating Virginia Tech and South Carolina Upstate before falling 1-3 to Big 12 Northwestern. Dayton is 0-3 after a brutal weekend in Louisville. The Flyers will have to figure out how to leave Kentucky behind and move forward.

A mark of a great team is the ability to beat the teams youíre suppose to beat. A mark of an elite team is to secure those victories in dominate fashion. The Flyers couldnít do that at times last year. Ball State, South Alabama, George Mason, George Washington, La Salle, Davidson and Miami all took sets off us, although we won those matches. The team did have 11 sweeps in 31 matches. However, with our roster of talent, we should not have given up sets to some of these teams.

Miami has only two Top 250 recruits (Jr S Morgan Seaman and Fr OH Lindsay Taylor). UD has three Top 100s, one Top 125 and six more Top 250s for a total of ten ranked players. We should dominate this match.

So how does a team go about learning to build a dominant environment within the program? For the Flyers you donít have to look any further for that guidance than Associate Head Coach Alyssa DíErrico. She won four National Championships while at Penn State from 2007-2010, but itís the 2008 team that is considered the most dominate of all-time of ANY NCAA team in ANY sport in recent history. NCAA.com published a story, by Jacob Myers, in December 2018 honoring their legacy 10 years after the teamís 2008 season ended in a National Championship. The article titled, ď10 Years Later, How Penn State Volleyball Lost Only Two Sets in 2008 and Won a National Championship,Ē is a must read for ALL Flyer athletes and fansÖmen and women. (Iím talking to you menís basketball.) That team beat every opponent 3-0, except one. It didnít matter that a lot of those opponents were ranked in the the Top 25.

Myers wrote, ďThe 2008 Penn State womenís volleyball team was perhaps the most dominate NCAA team of any sport in a generation. The Nittany Lions ran through every team on their schedule, setting records with 3-0 win after 3-0 winÖ There hasnít been an undefeated champion in Division I womenís volleyball since the 2009 Penn State team, let alone a team that didnít lose a set until the national semifinals. But that type of unprecedented run was never on the minds of the players. They didnít feel like they were constantly winning despite the 3-0 results. At times, it was a perfect team in crisis, growing frustrated with the lack of solutions to what they all believed were mistakes they had to fix to win a championship. The players on that 2008 team said, in order to win, they believed they always had to do more. In the end, thatís what made them great.Ē

To find out who finally took two sets off Penn State, as well as more insight as to what it took to dominate opponents, hereís the link:


There are several things this yearís Flyer team can learn from D'Errico's PSU team. The first being as good as that team was, they were always obsessed with cleaning up mistakes. UD struggled with errors this past weekend. When you get to a level of talent that Dayton has in itís volleyball program this year, the physical ability and skill set is high. Errors tend to be mental more often than physical. The Flyers will need to use matches like the one this week with Miami to clean up the errors and to raise their volleyball IQ in preparation for matches like Missouri and #15 Michigan this coming weekend. They will also have to use the A10 schedule for the same.

The second lesson is to build a culture of dominance on a consistent basis, that propels the program to deep runs in the NCAA tournament. The Louisville loss on Sunday was a step backwards after showing they could play with volleyballís elite against #10 Florida on Saturday. Managing the highs and lows of a season is critical. Rebounding quickly from a low is even more critical. Prepare. Play. Learn. The Prepare part is as much mental as what you want to execute physically. This week is an opportunity to execute the Learn starting Tuesday.

The 2010 Flyer volleyball team, so far, is considered the best of all time. They had some of this dominate attitude and they learned along the way. They werenít perfect in sweeping teams they should have beaten. They dropped 2 sets to SLU in the first conference match of the year, but then swept them in November. They dropped a set to Xavier before beating them 3-0 two weeks later. They dropped one set to George Washington who was pretty good back then. They dropped a set to Duquesne in the A10 semifinals. But in all, they swept 20 of their 32 matches that season. That squad did a good job of dominating the teams they were suppose to beat. Miami is one of those teams this season. Will the Flyers have the mental fortitude to move past the weekend's disappointments and dominate Miami to get back on track?

If Chris R. is correct, (I know...highly questionable), and this volleyball season is going to be good, but itís really setting up an amazing run in 2020, then there are lessons that will need to be learned between now and mid-November. It would be easy to go into Oxford with our heads hanging a little low and not be as mentally prepared as we need to be to perform at a dominate level. We would probably still win, but that should not be good enough. If itís this teamís goal to make the second weekend of the NCAAs, THIS YEAR, sweeping Miami and eliminating a high percentage of errors starts Tuesday in Oxford, not 17 days later.
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By BeckysTXA on 09-01-2019, 04:35 PM
Iím working on the PSU article link. I might need some assistance from Chris, and after what I said about him in the article that door is probably closed.
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By BeckysTXA on 09-01-2019, 04:40 PM
Whew. Good to go.
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By Chris R on 09-03-2019, 03:31 AM

Everything I say and do is questionable!

I agree the 2010 team was just dominant. Dont think we'll see 20 of 32 sweeps this year. We tend to have trouble on receives and that often costs us a set to teams we're otherwise significantly more talented than. To me the beauty of sweeps is it keeps you fresh and off your feet for November. These long 4-5 set grinders get felt come tourney time when you dont have the legs you did in late August.

Obviously it was a disappointing weekend in Louisville with some razor-thin close calls and a beatdown, but three wins over Miami, Mizzou, and Michigan would turn a LOT of frowns upside down. We're at home this weekend -- you must protect your own dog house. So while perhaps UD was playing with house money in the Commonwealth, I see the Flyers with no out-clause if we dont get some Ws at Frericks. You are supposed to win all of your home games, whether Penn State or Gettysburg trots into town.
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