D III Women's Volleyball

A source for NCAA Division III women's volleyball info and opinion, with a focus on the Midwest and Central regions

2016 preseason conference polls

Listed below are the preseason favorites, according to Central and Midwest region conference polls. Links are to conference poll releases. My picks, if different, are in parentheses.

CCIW: Illinois Wesleyan (Elmhurst)
IIAC: Loras (Buena Vista)
MIAC: Bethel
MWC: Cornell
NACC: Edgewood (Concordia Wisconsin)
SLIAC: Greenville
UMAC: Northwestern
WIAC: UW-Whitewater

The GSAC and UAA have not done preseason polls traditionally.

-Ricky Nelson

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Written by Ricky Nelson

August 22, 2016 at 11:37 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

2 Responses

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  1. Hi Ricky,good to see you going strong and looking forward to another season of your info. Here is 2 cents on your NE region picks.
    CCC(Roger Williams), GNAC(Rivier), Little East(Umass-Boston), MASCAC(FraminghamSt.), and NECC(Regis) all are reasonable.
    It will be interesting to see if Umass-Boston can rebound from a tough 2015.

    It appears you were looking for one to change and saw Colby-Sawyer’s record(12-25), but change the NAC pick back quick before too many notice. Colby-Sawyer is a better than average team NE wise(15-20 out of 75+). They are the only school in the NAC that plays even competitive volleyball. Last year they just bit off a very, very tough schedule that was too much. Since joining the NAC for the 2011 season they are 42-0 in regular season and tournament play, having lost 3 sets in those matches. Pencil them in every year like Juniata and Wittenberg.

    NEWMAC: I am going to take Springfield. When on, they are scary. Good size, good athletes. They do lose 4 of 10 rotation players but their top 2 in kills and top 3 in digs return

    MIT is very good, they are quick and athletic, but overall size is a problem.

    Babson graduated 5 core rotation players and 2 subs who played 56 and 60 sets. They are starting over. Clark is the sleeper. Wellesley needs to regain their footing after a couple mediocre seasons.

    NESCAC: I am going to take Williams, from a top 5 again including Amherst, Bowdoin, Middlebury, and Tufts. None of these teams would be a big surprise. Conn College will be solid as always but seems a step behind.

    Amherst loses 4 rotation players including their libero and setter. they have a player for the libero spot. The top 2 point getters are back. Setting is the question. a freshman or two might need to help.

    Bowdoin lost an All-American and 1 other rotation player from the NE region championship team. They will need a freshman hitter to come in and play, but all the other key pieces are back.

    I see why you took Middlebury, They did not have a senior on the team last year. The schedule is in their favor as well, they are home for all their big matches. But, last year they just did not give you the same feeling as the other teams.Could a year make the difference? Definitely.

    Tufts loses 2.5 rotation spots (1/2 a setter) and the #1 hitter. They started very strong last year and faded at the end losing 4 of 5 including back to back to Midd to end the year. They have people to step in. Let’s see if they bring in another DI transfer to finally get their first title since their 1996.

    Williams in general is the alpha team in the NESCAC. They get first pick of the high SAT players. Injuries were a problem last year. They lose a 4 year setter and their middles. I think they can probably replace the bigs with people they have. The setter it appears will be a freshman, so we shall see.
    Here is my hunch for picking them. Their 2016 roster, including freshmen, was posted in mid July. That is NEVER done in the NESCAC. Everyone politely waits till the freshmen “make the team in tryouts” and posts the roster a week, or even a few days, before the season starts(3 of 10 other teams have just posted). That detail tells me the coach is very confident in what she has.

    NED3VballFan

    August 31, 2016 at 11:13 am

  2. I’m certainly out of my element in New England. I’m very happy to have a strong local voice to tell me where I’m wrong.

    I saw Maine Maritime returning a bunch of first-teamers and Colby-Sawyer lost a couple of big bullets. My list of previous winners in each conference tells me Colby-Sawyer was the safe pick, but I didn’t realize it was such a heavy favorite on par with Witt each season.

    I get to see a bit of the NESCAC and NEWMAC during the regular season but not many of the other New England leagues. I see everyone else during the NCAA tourney, and Colby-Sawyer never looked great to me. Hard to believe that team is on its own level in its league. Bleak conference if that’s the case.

    -Ricky Nelson

    Ricky Nelson

    August 31, 2016 at 3:49 pm


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