In this year's conference challenge format, Kansas State and Minnesota will square off in the event's first match at 6 p.m. (CT) on Aug. 28,with Nebraska and Michigan to follow at 8:30. The next evening, Kansas State will face Michigan at 6 p.m., and Nebraska will face Minnesota at 8:30.
Along with the national broadcast on CBS College Sports Network, this year's Showcase will be shown regionally on NET, Nebraska's PBS station, who will be producing the event.
In an attempt to make the matches more television-friendly, the Runza/AVCA Showcase will be experimenting with several features at this year's event. There will be two media timeouts during each set, rather than the typical one, which will be taken when the first team reaches eight points, and then again at 16 points. Each team will then be allotted one more timeout per set.
In addition, the tournament will be played on a three-color court, instead of the customary two colors, with the third color being used in-between the 3-meter lines. Finally, the tournament will use the television-friendly format of holding the start of the next play during replays, referred to as the "call to beckon" by officials.
"We've spent a lot of time listening to those who televise and watch volleyball," said Kathy DeBoer, AVCA Executive Director. "We're eager to see if these small changes enhance the presentation and we're most appreciative to our participating coaches, officials and production staff for working with us to test these innovations."
Tickets to the 2009 Runza/AVCA Showcase are still available. Single-session prices are $22 for lower bowl reserved seats and $18 for upper bowl reserved seats and can be purchased by calling Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000, by visiting Ticketmaster.com or at the Qwest Center box office. All-session passes are also currently available with prices set at $39 (lower bowl reserved) or $32 (upper bowl reserved).
For more information on the 2009 Runza/AVCA College Volleyball Showcase,visit the AVCA Web site, www.avca.org.