The automatic qualifying bids to the 2018 NCAA Division I women's volleyball tournament are set, as 32 teams clinched their spots by winning their conference or conference tournament. Of those 32 teams, five teams — Florida Gulf Coast, Eastern Michigan, Bryant, Navy and South Dakota — will make their first NCAA tournament appearance.
After losing in the Atlantic Sun championship match the past two seasons, the Florida Gulf Coast Eagles finally broke through for their first tournament title and an NCAA bid. They won the A-Sun regular season outright going 15-1 in conference, then beat No. 2 seed Kennesaw State in the final, which beat Gulf Coast in the final last season.
Unlike Florida Gulf Coast, Navy hadn't had a ton of recent success before winning its first-ever bid to the NCAAs. The Mids began the 2015 season 2-19. Three years later, they're in the NCAA tournament after sharing the Patriot League regular-season title with American, then beating the Eagles in the championship match.
In one of the more improbable runs in the 2018 conference tournaments, Eastern Michigan secured its first NCAA tournament bid by winning the MAC as a No. 5 seed. The Eagles won four straight matches on their way to the title, beating No. 1 Bowling Green in the semifinals, then knocking off No. 2 Miami (Ohio) in the championship.
Bryant and South Dakota were both No. 2 seeds in its conference tournaments. Bryant won the Northeast Conference by beating No. 4 seed Sacred Heart in the tournament final, while the Coyotes pulled off a stunning upset against Denver. The Pioneers had won the past four Summit League championships until South Dakota secured its first invite to the tournament.
The entire list of automatic qualifiers:
|Stony Book||America East|
|UCF||American Athletic Conference|
|Florida Gulf Coast||Atlantic Sun|
|Northern Arizona||Big Sky|
|High Point||Big South|
|Cal Poly||Big West|
|Hofstra||Colonial Athletic Association|
|Green Bay||Horizon League|
|Northern Iowa||Missouri Valley|
|Colorado State||Mountain West|
|Murray State||Ohio Valley|
|Stephen F. Austin State||Southland|
|South Dakota||Summit League|
|Texas State||Sun Belt|
|New Mexico State||WAC|