Nebraska Volleyball Hosts Wisconsin in a Big Ten and Top Ten Showdown

The No. 6 Nebraska volleyball team (16-3, 10-0 Big Ten) faces its second of three straight top-15 opponents this Wednesday, Oct. 27 with No. 3 Wisconsin (17-1, 9-1) at the Devaney Center. First serve is set for 8 p.m.  The match will be broadcast on KBBN 95.3 FM with coverage on the Huskers Radio Network beginning at 7:30.

Quick Hits
• Nebraska has sole possession of first place in the Big Ten standings and is the only remaining unbeaten team at 10-0 in conference play. The Huskers are ahead of second-place Wisconsin (9-1).
• The Huskers moved up three spots to No. 6 in the AVCA national poll this week.
• NU will have played three straight ranked opponents with No. 7 Purdue, No. 3 Wisconsin and No. 11 Minnesota over the current eight-day stretch, Oct. 23-30.
• The Huskers carry a season-long 10-match win streak — their longest since 13 straight wins, Nov. 2 – Dec. 13, 2018.
• NU leads the conference with a .283 attack percentage, 15.09 kills per set, 1.91 service aces per set, 13.91 assists per set and 17.48 digs per set in Big Ten matches.
• NU has gone at least 3-0 to start Big Ten play nine consecutive years. The Huskers’ current 10-0 start is their best since going 11-0 in their inaugural season in the conference in 2011.
• Nebraska held a streak of 60 straight weeks in the top 10 of the AVCA poll before briefly dropping to 12th in the Sept. 20 and Sept. 27 releases. It was the only time the Huskers had ranked outside the top 10 since Sept. 18, 2017, when they were 14th.
• NU opened 2021 with a six-match win streak, then dropped three straight to No. 20 Utah (Sept. 11), No. 16 Stanford (Sept. 14) and No. 5 Louisville (Sept. 18) before rebounding with 10 wins.
• The Huskers played four straight top-20 opponents in an 11-day span last month with No. 19 Creighton (Sept. 8), No. 20 Utah (Sept. 11), No. 16 Stanford (Sept. 14) and No. 5 Louisville (Sept. 18).
• Five of NU’s six freshmen have seen the court this year.

Scouting the Wisconsin Badgers
Wisconsin is 17-1 (9-1 Big Ten) and carries a nine-match win streak into Wednesday’s contest. The Badgers beat back-to-back top-15 opponents last weekend, first taking down No. 6 Ohio State on Friday, 3-1, followed by No. 14 Penn State on Saturday, 3-2.

UW rallied from a 2-1 deficit against PSU, and Dana Rettke finished with 24 kills on .512 hitting to lead the Badgers. Julia Orzol added 19 more kills, and Devyn Robinson had 11 kills and 10 blocks. Sydney Hilley finished with 65 assists and 18 digs.

Hilley leads the Big Ten with 12.30 assists per set, while Izzy Ashburn is second with 0.51 aces per set. Dana Rettke is third for both hitting percentage (.457) and blocks per set (1.35). The Badgers are tied with Nebraska for the lowest opponent hitting percentage in the conference (.146).

Kelly Sheffield is in his ninth season and owns a record of 220-51 at UW and a career mark of 493-163 over 21 years as a head coach.

Noting the Series: vs. Wisconsin
Nebraska leads the all-time series with Wisconsin 19-8-1, including 9-7 in the John Cook era and 8-6 as Big Ten peers. NU has a 10-2 advantage at home in the series.

The Badgers have won five straight in the series. The most recent meeting was Dec. 14, 2019 in the NCAA Regional Final in Madison, Wis., which UW won 3-0.

Nebraska and Wisconsin last played in Lincoln on Oct. 5, 2019, which the Badgers won, 3-0. The Huskers’ last win was Sept. 30, 2017 at the Devaney Center in five sets.