Nebraska wins five-set thriller over Wisconsin to stay undefeated

October 23, 2023
Nebraska ruined Wisconsin’s undefeated season (and protected their own) with an electrifying five-set dub, likely stealing the top poll spot later today.

The GIST: As you read, the season’s century’s biggest game did not disappoint, so it’s no surprise that volleyball’s on everyone’s lips this weekend. Let’s dig in.

The watershed win: Massive momentum swings and a roaring crowd helped Nebraska force a cutthroat fifth set, and a last-second Huskers challenge proved a Wisconsin net violation to seal the landmark dub. Mayhem.

  • The win broke Nebraska’s 10-match losing streak against their arch-enemies, and standout performances from their top-notch freshmen put the conference on notice for years to come. Look out, world — there’s a new sheriff in town.

On other courts: The West Coast’s powerhouses kept the energy rolling as the No. 8 Oregon Ducks hosted No. 3 Stanford last night. The Cardinal’s relentless attack held off Oregon’s third-set comeback attempt to take the tight 3-1 dub, maintaining their unblemished conference record in the process.

  • In other Pac-12 action, the always-competitive but unranked USC leveled up with a reverse sweep of No. 4 Washington State, marking their first Top-5 win since 2018. Hot damn.

Zooming out: College volleyball remains top-heavy — the best squads of the last 20 years still control the top of the poll and the national tournament — but parity’s on the rise, and the sport’s popularity is booming because of it. With a new domestic league launching in February, today’s NCAA stars will soon be able to kill it as pros stateside.

  • The world’s catching on to the sport’s shine, but Lincoln, NE, and Madison, WI, remain the center of the volleyball universe.