Posted On: 11/11/15 10:32 PM

I’ve always been one that enjoyed thinking about what Nebraska tournaments would look like in a one-class system.

How would have those great Columbus Scotus teams from the mid 90s to the mid 2000s have done? In a one-class state tournament, would Kearney Catholic be able to make a deep run this year? I realize it’s pathetic, but these are the things that I think about. And while I don’t advocate going that route and it isn’t a possibility of ever happening, I thought it would be fun to at least consider what it would look like.

What I have below is what a potential single-class state volleyball tournament would look like in 2015. Here are the basic guidelines I tried to follow to put a selection process in place similar to what the NCAA uses in it’s selection of a 64-team bracket in basketball:

  • There are 8 regional pods, designed to help minimize travel. While every effort is made to keep a team as close to home as possible, priority was given to making sure the top 16 teams in the state were given either a 1 or 2 seed. Therefore, some teams were sent on the road for the first three rounds to ensure proper seeding and balance.
  • In the NCAA, winning your conference and/or tournament earns you an automatic bid. That really wouldn’t work in this situation, so to help make sure all regions and school sizes are represented, we used all 48 state qualifiers this year as automatic qualifiers. This gave us 48 automatic bids and allowed for 16 at-large berths.
  • The regional “pod” tournaments would take place the same time as the state tournament, this Thursday-Saturday. The eight remaining teams would advance to the state tournament – with all matches played at the Bob Devaney Sports Center. The quarterfinals being the Tuesday before Thanksgiving with the semifinals on the day after Thanksgiving and the championship that Saturday night. This may not be logistically possible, but hey, this is all make-believe anyway.

So, here is what I think a single-class, 64-team state volleyball tournament would look like for 2015 in Nebraska.

Western Region
Games Played at North Platte Community College

#1 North Platte vs. #8 Dundy County-Stratton
#4 Chadron vs. #5 Sutton
#3 Grand Island CC vs. #6 Gothenburg
#2 Ogallala vs. #7 Sandhills-Thedford

Mideast Region
Games Played at Wayne State College

#1 Gretna vs. #8 Humphrey St. Francis
#4 O’Neill St. Mary’s vs. #5 Columbus Lakeview
#3 St. Paul vs. #6 Hartington Cedar Catholic
#2 Columbus Scotus vs. #7 Crofton

North Central Region
Games Played at Heartland Events Center in Grand Island

#1 Grand Island Northwest vs. #8 Heartland Lutheran
#4 Stanton vs. #5 Doniphan-Trumbull
#3 Millard North vs. #6 Wisner-Pilger
#2 Ord vs. #7 Stuart

South Central Region
Games Played at University of Nebraska-Kearney

#1 Kearney Catholic vs. #8 Potter-Dix
#4 Hastings St. Cecilia vs. #5 Hampton
#3 Waverly vs. #6 Exeter-Milligan
#2 Aurora vs. #7 Bertrand

Mid-South Region
Games Played at Nebraska Wesleyan University

#1 Papillion-LaVista South vs. #8 Lawrence-Nelson
#4 Freeman vs. #5 Norris
#3 Lincoln North Star vs. #6 Diller-Odell
#2 Elkhorn South vs. #8 Arcadia-Loup City

Northeast Region
Games Played at Midland University

#1 Omaha Skutt vs. #8 Shelby-Rising City
#4 Guardian Angels CC vs. #5 Platteview
#3 Elkhorn vs. #6 Emerson-Hubbard
#2 Lincoln Southwest #Howells-Dodge

East Region
Games Played at Baxter Arena in Omaha

#1 Omaha Marian vs. #8 Ashland-Greenwood
#4 Lincoln East vs. #5 Seward
#3 Omaha Duchesne vs. #6 Wahoo
#2 Millard West vs. #7 Omaha Concordia

Southeast Region
Games Played at Ralston Arena

#1 Papillion-LaVista vs. #8 Giltner
#4 Omaha Gross vs. #5 Bishop Nuemann
#3 Bellevue West vs. #6 Columbus
#2 Lincoln Southeast vs. #7 Johnson-Brock

State Tournament
Games Played at Bob Devaney Sports Center

East Winner vs. South Central Winner

Northeast Winner vs. Mid South Winner

Southeast Winner vs. Mideast Winner

Western Winner vs. North Central Winner