Women's Volleyball Ranked 10th In AVCA/USA Today Preseason Poll
Aug. 13, 2001
Colorado Springs, Colo. - The University of Nebraska, the defending NCAA Division I national volleyball champions, is the overwhelming favorite in the USA Today/AVCA Coaches Top 25 Preseason Poll released on Aug. 13. Stanford checks in at No. 10 after a 19-12 season in 2000.
The Cornhuskers, 34-0 last season, earned 63 of 65 first-place votes in the preseason poll and outdistanced second-place USC by a 1623-1472 margin (151 points). Nebraska returns AVCA National Player of the Year Greichaly Cepero, AVCA All-America First-Team member Laura Pilakowski and AVCA All-America Second-Team selection Amber Holmquist. Further, the Cornhusker return the services of two-time AVCA All-American Nancy Meendering Metcalf, who sat out last season after training with the U.S. National Team leading up to the 2000 Sydney Olympics. Overall, Nebraska has five returning starters and nine letterwinners back from 2000, in addition to the transfer of Michigan State outside hitter Amy Sibbernsen.
USC, which reach the NCAA semifinals last year, hopes to build upon its 2000 record of 29-3. Under the direction of Mick Haley, the Trojans return two AVCA All-America Second-Team picks in April Ross and Jennifer Pahl.
Penn State, the Big 10 Preseason favorite, was selected third in the USA Today/AVCA Coaches Top 25 Preseason Poll after finishing last year with a 30-6 mark. The Nittany Lions return six starters from the 2000 campaign, including AVCA All-America Second-Team pick Mishka Levy.
Wisconsin earned the fourth spot in the preseason poll with 1320 points. Hawai'I was fifth in the poll with 1261 points. Rounding out the top 10 included Arizona sixth, UCLA seventh, Long Beach State eighth, Florida ninth and Stanford 10th.
The 2001 season opens Aug. 24-25 with the 2001 State Farm/NACWAA Volleyball Classic at Stockton, Calif. The tournament features three teams listed among the top five of the 2001 USA Today/AVCA Coaches Top 25 Preseason Poll. Nebraska faces Hawai'i at 5 p.m. PDT on Aug. 25. Wisconsin challenges tournament host Pacific, ranked 12th in the preseason poll, at 7 p.m. PDT in the second match of the day. The tournament consolation match begins at 5 p.m. PDT on Aug. 25, while the championship match is scheduled for 7 p.m. PDT. All four matches are tentatively scheduled to air on ESPN2. Highlights from Friday's matches will air on Aug. 25 from 7:30-9 p.m. PDT. The championship match will be shown on Monday, Aug. 27, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. PDT.
Stanford opens its 2001 season against No. 15 Minnesota on August 31st at the Jefferson Cup in Charlottesville, Virginia.
courtesy of AVCA
USA TODAY/AVCA Division I Coaches Top 25 Preseason Poll
August 13, 2001
1. Nebraska (63)2. USC (2)3. Penn State4. Wisconsin5. Hawai'i6. Arizona7. UCLA8. Long Beach State9. Florida10. Stanford11. BYU12. Pacific13. UC Santa Barbara14. Colorado State15. Minnesota16. Ohio State17. Pepperdine18. Texas A&M19. Kansas State20. Notre Dame21. Utah22. Santa Clara23. South Carolina24. Loyola Marymount25. Georgia Tech
Others receiving points and listed on two or more ballots: Louisville (112), Missouri (109), Colorado (108), Washington State (102), Michigan State (88), North Carolina (62), Northern Iowa (58), Utah State (33), Michigan (26), Texas Tech (20), University of San Diego (18), South Florida (17), Tennessee (16), Arizona State (15), Baylor (14), Duke (13), Arkansas (12), Florida State (11), Western Michigan (9), Fairfield (8), Cal Poly (8), Northern Arizona (5), Wisconsin-Milwaukee (4), San Jose State (3).