Daily Dots (February 26, 2021): Club or high school volleyball factoids, notions and ideas to impress your friends (or not)
• If you’ve been around volleyball more than five years, you’ve no doubt heard about and seen the exploits of Yale men’s volleyball libero Scott Sterling. If you haven’t, you owe it to yourself to spend three minutes watching this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oY2nVQNlUB8. Please note that by sharing the link we are in no way endorsing nor condoning head injuries, which can be gruesome and life-altering.
• My son, Tim, became “TikTok famous” during the pandemic while posting videos about hitting a baseball. His videos were picked up by ESPN and the TV show Ridiculousness, among others. Videos tagged “baseball” have received 11 billion views on the platform. How many views have volleyball-tagged videos had? 9.4 billion. That puts our sport squarely in the middle in terms of popularity. Football has more than 80 billion views, soccer almost 43 billion on one end of the spectrum. Golf, hockey, tennis, wrestling and lacrosse all have far fewer views. The most surprising sport? Cricket, with 23.6 billion views.
• Continuing the mock draft top 30 countdown we started on Wednesday — college coaches could pick ANY PLAYER in the HS Class of 2021 or younger to start a team with, based on how good the player was projected to be as a college freshman — here are picks numbered 20-16:
20. Ella Wrobel, 6-4 OH, ’22, SPVB — Wisconsin
19. Caroline Jurevicius, 6-2 RS, ’23, Academy Volleyball Cleveland
18. Devin Kahahawai, 6-2 OH, ’22, Spike and Serve
17. Nya Bunton, 6-4 OH, ’23, KiVA
16. Jordyn Byrd, 6-4 RS, ’23, Siesta Key Juniors
• “Practice like it’s competition and compete like it’s another day on the practice court” – Karch Kiraly
• Identical twins Shelbey and Stacey Manthorpe made an indelible mark on Pennsylvania high school volleyball. Shelbey, a setter, and Stacey, a middle blocker, led Merion Mercy HS to four straight Class AA state title from 2007 to 2010, during which time the Golden Bears lost only twice! Merion Mercy was 40-0 when the Manthorpes were seniors and won state, 25-21, 25-17, 25-10. Lest you think that they were only good because they played in a middling volleyball state, note that twice they led Synergy to Open division finals at the Junior Olympic National Championships, a feat no other Pennsylvania club team has achieved. The twins went on the play collegiately at Seton Hall. Stacey graduated third all-time in kills and sixth in digs for the Pirates. Shelbey finished fourth in assists, fifth in digs, 11th in blocks and 13th in kills.
• MN Select director Scott Jackson has used February to educate his club members about Black History Month. He caught up with former Select standout Jasmyn Martin, a senior outside at Florida State, to get her thoughts on what Black History Month means to her as a biracial woman.
“The murder of George Floyd happening so close to home has impacted me and many others significantly,” she shared, “and has shed light on the ongoing injustices done to Black and Brown people.
“Black History Month is an opportunity to learn and have conversations with one another.
“It is essential that the conversation doesn’t end this month. We must keep talking, keep learning, and keep working toward understanding and justice.”
• Lari Migliorino, a 6-0 junior OH playing club this season at Oklahoma Peak Performance VBC after many years at Oklahoma Charge, recently announced her committed to the University of Central Oklahoma. If you have made a recent commitment, let us know about it! Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
• Today on “Volleyball Coaches and Trainers,” a very large, closed group on Facebook, there is a robust discussion on the drama that pervades girls varsity volleyball, from being rude to teammates to not being ready to practice when it’s time. Among the helpful advice being doled out:
“Undesirable behavior can be curtailed with strong, direct communication and leadership.”
“Gotta be honest with them in a very genuine conversation…Respect for each other’s time, energy and effort is what I would be pushing.”
“One of my mentors told me, very wisely, you get what you tolerate.”
“Make sure there are consequences for actions…NOW…so other players see the culture that you’re developing and the expectations that you have as a standard for your program and things will change.”
• Illini Elite 18 Cardinal head coach Kyle Caldwell reports that he has been most impressed with senior OH Emily Cole early in the season.
“Emily Cole has been a rock star outside playing 6 rotations, hitting .250 and passing a 2.00 despite being undersized in 18 Open,” he noted. “She only touches 9-3 but plays with the confidence of someone touching 10-0.”
• Finally, more nicknames for players from a random club team. The randomized chose Houston Juniors 18 Elite, coached by my good friend Kara Pratt. How about that?
Annie “Orie” Antar
Tatiana Evans “To Betsy”
“Just” Jessica Frannea
Kayla Griebl “Tattoos”
Aryn “And Stimpy” Johnson
Brooke “Why don’t you just meet me in the” Middleton
Toyosi Onabanjo “On my knee”
Eliana Posada “Adventure”
Alexandra “Perfect” Tennon
“Hey” Bailey Tillman
Grace Wiley “Coyote”
“Tell me how I’m supposed to breathe with no” Erika Williams