06/25/13 — Conference Carolinas will host play-in game for NCAA men's volleyball tournament in 2014

View Archive

Conference Carolinas will host play-in game for NCAA men's volleyball tournament in 2014

By Conference Carolinas
Published in Sports on June 25, 2013 1:47 PM

HIGH POINT -- Could it be Penn State, maybe Princeton?

How about Harvard coming south into Conference Carolinas territory?

If history repeats itself, next year Penn State would claim its sixteenth straight Eastern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association (EIVA) conference title, then hit the road to play the Conference Carolinas tournament champion.

The NCAA recently confirmed that a Conference Carolinas team will host the first-ever NCAA men's volleyball tournament play-in game next April. By achieving a higher conference RPI rating than the EIVA, Conference Carolinas earns the right to host the play-in game. That means a perennial Division I powerhouse will face a Division II program for the chance to play in the men's volleyball final four.

The Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF) champion and Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association (MIVA) champion will each earn an automatic bid to the 2014 NCAA tournament. One team will receive an at-large invitation, while the fourth spot goes to the EIVA-Conference Carolinas play-in winner.

The NCAA said that the men's volleyball tournament will not be expanded to a true 8-team tournament at this time because the organization is in the middle of a budget cycle.

"We are extremely excited to help grow the sport of men's volleyball and it has really taken off in our league," said Brook Patterson, associate commissioner of Conference Carolinas. "We'll have eight teams this year while adding a ninth in 2015; which means all of our men's schools will sponsor the sport. For our league to have this opportunity, it's a tremendous honor and we are looking forward to the challenge."