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Michella Chester | NCAA.com | October 18, 2021

College volleyball rankings: Purdue drops, Ohio State and Washington re-enter Power 10 rankings

College volleyball rankings: Ohio State, Washington re-enter latest Power 10

A few major things happened this weekend in college volleyball that will cause some movements in the rankings. For one, Purdue had a tough weekend with both Ohio State and Penn State. First, they fell to Ohio State after beating them earlier in the season, and then they got some redemption with a five-set win over Penn State. 

Washington took down Oregon in five sets, and Washington State took down Oregon in a sweep for the Ducks' second loss of the weekend. BYU took down Pepperdine, and more. 

So, with that being said, here are my latest Power 10 rankings after Week 8. Ranked wins and games are the biggest factor, but I also take into account the eye test, since these are my rankings alone and different from the AVCA. 

1. Texas (1)

The Longhorns stay on top, per usual, after they pulled off two sweeps over the weekend against TCU. In the second win, they were yet again outstanding from the service line with 11 aces, including four each from Asjia O'Neal and Melanie Parra. The Longhorn's service game continues to be their strength as it was last season all the way to the title game. 

2. Louisville (2)

The Cards are going to stay steady at No. 2 in the nation in my Power 10 unless given reason to lower them. They swept seven straight opponents and then most recently beat Wake Forest in four sets. The Cards and Longhorns are the last two undefeated teams in the nation. 

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3. Pitt (3)

Pitt and Wisconsin still feel like they are completely tied for me. I wish I could have them both as No. 3 in the nation. The Panthers won two matches since its loss to Georgia Tech with wins over Miami (Fla.) and Florida State. But next weekend, the long awaited Pitt-Louisville matchup is finally upon us. 

4. Wisconsin (4)

Again, I think the Badgers are tied for third. Since its loss to Maryland, the Badgers have been destroying their opponents. Aside from Illinois, they have swept everyone else. For the next two weeks, they have an extremely tough schedule in the Big Ten with Ohio State, Penn State, Nebraska and Purdue all in consecutive matches. 

5. Kentucky (6)

The Wildcats move up to No. 5 after Purdue fell to Ohio State this past weekend. Kentucky notched two wins over the weekend against LSU and doesn't have too many challenges remaining in the regular season. 

6. Nebraska (7)

The Huskers move up to No. 6 in my Power 10, also because of Purdue dropping down. The Wildcats and Huskers both have three losses on the season, but mostly to good teams. And for the Huskers, their three losses came in the midst of lineup changes and while missing All-American Lauren Stivrins. Ever since she has been back and they solidified their lineup, they have been looking like a different team entirely, and a good one at that. 

7. BYU (8)

BYU Volleyball

The Cougars gave us what we have been all looking for for a little while now — a ranked win. BYU took down Pepperdine over the weekend in four sets. Although it wasn't a top 10 opponent, it is still a promising sign for the Cougars who do not play as rigorous of a schedule as some of the other teams in my top 10. Kenzie Koerber posted a double-double with14 kills and 13 digs, setter Whitney Bower put up double-digit numbers, totaling 42 assists and 15 digs, and Kennedy Eschenberg hit .615 on the match with eight kills.  

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8. Ohio State (NR)

Ohio State is back in my Power 10 with a big bang after they snapped a seven-game losing streak vs. the Boilermakers with a four-set win. The win was their second top-10 win of the season, taking down No. 6 Purdue after falling in five sets to the Boilermakers earlier in the season. Mia Grunze had a phenomenal outing with 17 kills on .324 hitting, and despite hitting in the negatives, Emily Londot notched 13 kills. Gabby Gonzales also posted 12 kills, and Rylee Rader had 11 kills on .579 hitting. 

9. Purdue (5)

The Boilermakers dropped four spots from No. 5 to No. 9 with the loss to OSU. They remain in the top 10, though, because they got some redemption the very next day following the loss with a five-set win over Penn State. Caitlyn Newton posted a season-high 26 kills, and setter Hayley Bush and Jena Otec each posted season-bests with 48 assists and 27 digs, respectively. 

10. Washington (NR)

Washington VB

Earlier in the day on Sunday, I had UCLA still in my Power 10 rankings and I was picking between Washington and Purdue to close out my top 10. Washington just took down Oregon in five sets over the weekend, but I ultimately decided that Purdue's win over PSU meant more since Oregon was subsequently swept by Washington State. However, UCLA then was reverse swept by Arizona State, and they fall out my Power 10, giving way for the Huskies to move in. We got a glimpse of the comeback Huskies again when they came back from an 0-2 deficit against the Ducks behind 20 kills from Claire Hoffman. 

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