Texas players huddle together during a scrimmage against Texas A&M in Austin on April 4, 2018. NICK WAGNER / AMERICAN-STATESMAN

BEVO BEAT Volleyball

Ahead of 2018 volleyball season, Texas ranked third in national poll

Posted August 8th, 2018

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After looking into their crystal balls, the country’s volleyball coaches have seen bronze in Texas’ future.

The AVCA slotted Texas into the third slot of its preseason poll on Wednesday. None of the polls’ 64 first-place votes went to Texas, which earned a total of 1,389 points. Texas was outdistanced by No. 1 Stanford (1,575 points) and No. 2 Nebraska (1,525 points).

Texas went 27-3 last season. The Longhorns reached the fourth round of the NCAA tournament.

In the off-season, Texas graduated its all-time leader in blocks (Chiaka Ogbogu) and digs (Cat McCoy), as well as a two-time All-American (Ebony Nwanebu). All-conference outside hitter Lexi Sun also transferred to Nebraska.

Texas, though, has retained plenty of talent. The team’s leader in kills the past two seasons, Micaya White returns for her junior year. Seniors Morgan Johnson and Yaazie Bedart-Ghani were placed on the Big 12’s preseason honor roll. White has been tabbed as the front-runner for the conference’s MVP award.

Logan Eggleston, the Big 12’s preseason freshman of the year, is also among the five additions to UT’s roster.

Five of Texas’ first eight matches are against teams ranked among the poll’s top nine teams. Texas will play No. 7 Florida on Aug. 25, No. 9 Wisconsin on Sept. 1 and No. 5 Kentucky on Sept. 7. A home-and-home series with Stanford is scheduled for the second week of September.

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