THIS WEEK: The sixth-ranked Stanford men’s volleyball team (14-7, 11-7 MPSF) plays host to No. 7 USC (14-8, 13-8 MPSF), Thursday, March 27 at 7 p.m. and No. 3 Pepperdine (14-5, 14-5 MPSF), Friday, March 28 at 5 p.m. Both matches will be played in Maples Pavilion.
CATCH THE CARDINAL: Live stats for the matches can be found on the men’s volleyball schedule page on GoStanford.com. Thursday’s match will be televised live on all seven Pac-12 Networks. Friday’s match can be seen on Pac-12 Bay Area and Pac-12 Los Angeles.
SCOUTING USC: USC is 13-8 in MPSF play and on a three-match winning streak, including a four-set win over then-No. 2 Long Beach State. The Trojans are led by junior setter Micah Christenson’s 11.82 assists and 2.50 digs per set. Freshman Lucas Yoder paces the squad with 4.11 kills on a .314 hitting percentage, while senior opposite Tanner Jansen adds 3.84 kills per set.
SCOUTING PEPPERDINE: The Waves (14-5) have won five in a row since dropping a four-set match to the Cardinal on March 7. Pepperdine is led by junior outside hitter Josh Taylor’s 4.16 kills and 1.37 digs per set. Redshirt junior Parker Kalmbach averages 3.56 kills and 1.01 blocks per set, while junior setter Matt West directs the offense with 11.35 assists per set.
SOCIAL MEDIA: Fans will have access to unique behind-the-scenes content on the team this season by liking Stanford Men’s Volleyball on Facebook or following the team on Twitter (@StanfordMVB) and Instagram (@therealstanfordmvb).
LAST TIME OUT: Stanford swept the season series against visiting Hawaii on March 14-15. Senior Brian Cook led the squad with 4.25 kills per set on a .400 hitting percentage. The Cardinal’s win over the Rainbow Wahine on March 15 was its first five-set win of the season in six tries.
IN THE POLL: Stanford remained at No. 6 in the latest AVCA Division I-II Men’s Coaches Poll after having the week off. The Cardinal is one of nine MPSF teams ranked in the top 15 with all nine appearing in the top 10.
STATISTICAL RANKINGS: The following is Stanford’s team and individual rankings among the nation’s top-25.
Hitting Percentage: .331, 4th
Kills per set: 13.66, 3rd (Brian Cook 3.60, 19th)
Assists per set: 12.90, 4th (James Shaw 10.94, 11th)
Digs per set: 9.91, 5th (Grant Delgado 2.52, 7th)
Aces per set: 1.36, 9th (Steven Irvin 0.35, 21st)
Points per set: (Brian Cook 4.13, 25th)
SENIOR STATEMENTS: Senior outside hitters Brian Cook and Steven Irvin pace the Cardinal this season with 3.60 and 3.39 kills per set, respectively. Cook has led the Cardinal in the kill column 13 times, while Irvin has done it in six matches and is hitting above .300 for the first time in his career.
HEAD COACH JOHN KOSTY: Stanford head coach John Kosty is in his eighth season at the helm of the Cardinal program and his 24th overall on staff. He is 135-89 in his career and guided Stanford to the 2010 NCAA national championship. The Cardinal has produced a first team AVCA All-America selection in each of the past six seasons under Kosty.