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From the Top of the Hill

An update on where KU volleyball ranks in their bid to host postseason play

4 min read

For the fourth week in a row, the Kansas volleyball program, winners of six in a row, landed at No. 14 in the AVCA poll on Monday afternoon.

The Jayhawks (18-4 overall, 9-3 Big 12) did pick up roughly 100 more points in the voting than they had a week ago, so their climb has been steady even if it has not resulted in them moving up a spot in the rankings.

None of that matters much to the KU players and coaches, of course. Their goal is simply to win and let the chips fall where they may.

With six matches remaining in the regular season, the Jayhawks are still in the hunt to host first- and second-round NCAA Tournament matches in Lawrence if things fall right.

Four wins in their final six matches would give KU a realistic shot at doing so. Five would make it a virtual lock.

If it happens, it would mark the first time since Horejsi Family Volleyball Arena was remodeled — and slightly renamed — that the Jayhawks would get to host. All of their appearances in the past couple of seasons have come on the road, with KU playing and advancing to the Sweet 16 at Creighton two years ago and playing and advancing to Round 2 at Nebraska last season.

Both of those schools, along with Arkansas, are expected to be in the mix to host the first two rounds this season and could be KU destinations if the Jayhawks are on the outside looking in when the field is announced.

This year’s selection show is slated for 5 p.m. on Nov. 26 on ESPNU.

Unlike some years, when the Jayhawks have watched the show and had to wonder if they were going to receive a bid, this year’s team knows it’s headed to the postseason. The Jayhawks are the third-highest ranked team in the Big 12 Conference this week, behind only No. 3 Texas and No. 12 BYU and ahead of No. 20 Baylor.

The goal now is to boost the resume as much as possible to give themselves a chance to play two more home matches.

KU, which is actually a half game up on BYU for second place in the conference standings entering the week, will play two matches at Iowa State (16-7, 7-5) this weekend — 6:30 p.m. Thursday and 4 p.m. Saturday — before finishing the season with single matches against Baylor (Nov. 15 at home), BYU (Nov. 17 away), Cincinnati (Nov. 22 away) and UCF (Nov. 25 at home).

Stay tuned to R1S1 Sports throughout the week for a ton more volleyball content on what we’ve dubbed Volleyball Appreciation Week at the site. It kicked off earlier today with this feature on impact transfer Toyosi Onabanjo.

We’ve got features and strategic breakdowns along with an update on injured senior Reagan Cooper in the works for the week ahead.

In other news we’ll be following this week…

• The KU men and women are both opening the regular season with home games at Allen Fieldhouse and we’ll be at both of them. The KU men play Monday night at 7 p.m. against North Carolina Central and the KU women play Northwestern State at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday. So look for photos and breakdowns from both of those games. Kansas is heavily favored in each one.

• We recently finished up a couple of great golf and swimming features and will run those this week at some point. One has an international flavor and the other looks at a first-time winner.

• We’re also going to stay on top of the KU football vibe as the Jayhawks prepare to host Texas Tech on Saturday — 11 a.m. on FS1 — while looking for a third consecutive win and to improve to 8-2 overall and 5-2 in Big 12 play. KU coach Lance Leipold said Monday that there was no real update on injured QB Jalon Daniels other than he continues to have good days and bad days and that he watched practice on Monday. Leiopld said Daniels was in his office at 6:30 a.m. on Monday morning to dive into the game plan for the week, adding, “first one in there.”

Wave the Wheat's Volleyball Appreciation Week

• The unexpected meet & greet that made Toyosi Onabanjo a Jayhawk

• A look at KU in the rankings & their chances of hosting this postseason

• Molly Schultz: 'The definition of happiness and sunshine'

• 'K-State killer' London Davis delivered one of KU's top performances of the week

• Familiarity, film & extra work the path back for Reagan Cooper

• Junior Caroline Bien goes from the back row to the big time again

— For tickets to all KU athletic events, visit