Minnesota falls a spot in polls despite 2-0 Big Ten start

The Gophers volleyball team opened conference play with a sweep of Northwestern, followed by a 3-1 win over then-No. 18 Wisconsin, but that apparently didnâÄôt impress enough voters in the CSTV/AVCA poll. Minnesota (12-2 overall, 2-0 Big Ten) actually fell a spot in the polls to No. 13 after being ranked No. 12 a week ago. Colorado State swapped places with Minnesota and owns the No. 12 spot in the polls after just a 3-2 win over unranked Wyoming over the weekend. Minnesota was one of six Big Ten teams ranked in the Top 25 this week, including the nationâÄôs No. 1 team, Penn State. âÄî Paul J. Cordes Williams commits to Minn. Robbinsdale CooperâÄôs Rodney Williams committed to the Gophers basketball team Sunday, the teamâÄôs third commitment for the class of 2009. A small forward, Williams was rated as one of the top-100 recruits for 2009 by Rivals.com. He joins five-star point guard and friend Royce White, of Hopkins, and point guard Justin Cobbs in the 2009 class. Head coach Tubby Smith has now recruited four players rated with four stars or higher by Rivals.com since taking over last season. Former coach Dan Monson recruited just one player of that caliber âÄî five-star Kris Humphries in 2003 âÄî since Rivals.com began its rating system in 2002. Williams, who led Cooper to the Class 4A semifinals last year, had interest from marquee basketball programs like Connecticut, Memphis and Kansas, and had offers from Wisconsin, Iowa and Miami. âÄî Trevor Born Swimming and diving open season with Alumni Meet MenâÄôs and womenâÄôs swimming begin the 2008-09 season at 6 p.m. Friday at the University Aquatic Center. The teams will compete in the annual Alumni Meet. Both the menâÄôs and womenâÄôs teams have large freshman classes drawn from local, national and international swimming talent. One recruit to watch from the menâÄôs team is Karl Burdis. The 5-foot-10-inch backstroke and freestyle swimmer holds Irish junior national records in the 100- and 50-meter long course backstroke and in the 50-, 100- and 200-meter short course backstroke. Both teams performed well at the Big Ten championships last year. The women swam to a championship while the men placed third. Both teams advanced to the NCAA championships, where the men placed 11th and the women placed 13th. âÄî Nicole Tommerdahl