Forgive me for the lack of volleyball updates. I was suppose to feature a non-conference and Big Ten preview with 40 and 30 days left respectively, but I have been caught up finishing my research with the University of Michigan, being a camp counselor for Academic Boot Camp back at Purdue, and trying to study for the GRE. And by this time this week, I'll be moving out of Earhart and up to Hilltop to begin RA training!
To sum up Purdue's schedule: the Big Ten is going to be difficult as always, and non-conference play will be one of the most difficult line ups that Purdue has seen over the last couple of seasons. By opening up with Northern Iowa and Washington in non-conference play, Purdue will get attention early. Win both of those games and remain undefeated in non-conference play for the 2nd straight year, Purdue will go into B1G play as a conference favorite. We will offer more specific opponent previews as the season progresses.
And yes, you did read that correctly, I did say "we" in that last sentence. I'd like to announce that I will no longer be the only person reporting for Purdue Volleyball this season, as I will have my "assistant" help me with these posts (especially the countdown). His name is James Collins, a senior at Purdue. I met him during the Paint Crew camp out for the Michigan State game in 2011 for College Game Day, and is someone who I have gotten to know through Purdue student sections and St. Thomas Aquinas. We are currently in the process of bumping him up to contributing author status (speed it up, James and T-Mill!), and he should be making his first post by next week.
We both have different views towards volleyball, especially in where we stand in the Block Party. James likes to be up close to the action towards the front, I like to be towards the back to make it louder up there and get an overall view of the game. James will be covering for me when I can't make it to home games due to my new responsibilities as a Resident Assistant at Hilltop, help us cover more games instead of just a weekend overview, and allow the readers to get more than one side of the game. It will be an exciting year for Volleyball on Hammer and Rails, and we are already getting the attention of Coach Shondell.
I don't want to brag, but...
For those who are regular attendees to Purdue Volleyball, you will notice a change this year as Belin Court is currently going under a facelift with the complete sanding and re-painting of the court border. I haven't been able to see any updates, but I assume the new B1G logo will be officially painted on instead of a giant sticker over the old logo, and maybe an implementation of the new Purdue logos from Nike. Belin Court had a sleek look to it, but fresh paint was needed. It will be exciting to see the changes made.
The 2012 Volleyball season looks to be one of the best seasons in program history, as Purdue should enter as National Contenders. Season tickets are still available, and a few games will be played in Mackey Arena this year as preparation for the West Lafayette NCAA Regional. Season tickets start at $80 for adults and $40 for Youth and Purdue Students. If you are a Purdue student, volleyball tickets were included in your VIP Card, and I suggest getting your tickets before school begins. Individual tickets go on sale August 1st, and I wouldn't be surprised if the home opener against Northern Iowa sells out, so get your tickets and join in the action!