The Huskers will open 2010 on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. against Kentucky
Photo by Scott Bruhn/Nebraska Communications

Huskers Open 2010 in Omaha

By NU Athletic Communications
Saturday, Aug. 28 Schedule
No. 9 Iowa State vs. No. 13 Florida • 2 p.m.
Television: CBS College Sports (Ch. 613 on DirecTV; Ch. 152 on DISH NETWORK)
Live Stats:

No. 2 Nebraska vs. No. 14 Kentucky • 4:30 p.m.
Television: NET-1 and NET-HD (Chs. 12 and 112) and CBS College Sports
Radio: Husker Sports Network, including B107.3 FM in Lincoln and KTWI 93.3 FM in Omaha, and on
Live Stats:

Sunday, Aug. 29 Schedule
No. 9 Iowa State vs. No. 14 Kentucky • 2 p.m.
Television: CBS College Sports
Live Stats:

No. 2 Nebraska vs. No. 13 Florida • 4:30 p.m.
Television: NET-1 and NET-HD and CBS College Sports
Radio: Husker Sports Network, including B107.3 FM in Lincoln and KTWI 93.3 FM in Omaha, and on
Live Stats:

Huskers Open 2010 in Omaha at Runza/AVCA Showcase
The Nebraska volleyball team begins the 2010 season this weekend at the Qwest Center in Omaha, where the Huskers will play in the Runza/AVCA Showcase. A match up between the Big 12 and Southeastern Conferences, the Huskers will be joined in the four-team field will by No. 9 Iowa State, No. 13 Florida and No. 14 Kentucky.

The weekend's action kicks off on Saturday with Florida and Iowa State at 2 p.m., before the Huskers and Wildcats take the floor at 4:30 p.m. On Sunday, Iowa State will take on Kentucky at 2 p.m., while Nebraska and Florida will meet at 4:30 p.m.

The 2010 season marks the fifth time the event has been held in Omaha (also 2005, 2007, 2008 and 2009) and the third year of a three-year run for the conference challenge format.

Tickets to the 2010 Runza/AVCA Showcase are available now. All-session passes are priced at $39 (lower bowl reserved) or $32 (upper bowl reserved) and can be purchased by calling Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000, by visiting or at the Qwest Center box office.
Fans can listen to all of the action with John Baylor and Diane Mendenhall on the 25-station Husker Sports Network, including B107.3 FM in Lincoln and Twister 93.3 FM in Omaha. In addition, all four matches will be televised on CBS College Sports with Larry Punteney and Kathi Weiskamp calling all of the action. Both of Nebraska's matches will also be carried statewide on NET Television (Ch. 12 and Ch. 112 in HD).

Noting the 2010 Runza/AVCA Showcase
Noting the Florida Gators
  • Florida is coming off a 25-6 record in 2009, which extended its nation-leading streak of consecutive 25-win seasons to 19.
  • The Gators return nine letterwinners from a year ago, including five starters. Junior right-side/setter Kelly Murphy, a two-time AVCA All-America selection, returns for the Gators after charting nine triple-doubles in 2009.
  • Florida is beginning its 27th year of collegiate volleyball in 2010, having compiled a 759-167 (.820) record in its 26 years of existence, including a 603-67 (.900) tally under head coach Mary Wise. The Gators' 603 victories since 1991 leads the nation during that span.
  • The Gators are making their fifth all-time appearance in the AVCA Showcase. Florida also has competed in the tournament in 1996, 1999, 2000 and 2003.

Noting the Kentucky Wildcats

  • The UK volleyball team has appeared in a school-best five consecutive NCAA Tournaments.
  • Kentucky has posted three consecutive seasons of 22 or more victories.
  • UK ranked in the top-10 nationally in two offensive categories a season ago (hitting percentage, kills per set).
  • The Wildcats return six players who appeared in 30 or more matches on a 29-win team from a season ago.

Noting the Iowa State Cyclones

  • Iowa State returns five starters and its libero from last year's team that advanced to the NCAA Regional Semifinals.
  • Head coach Christy Johnson-Lynch, the reigning Big 12 Coach of the Year, returns for her sixth season at Iowa State, entering the season with a career record of 105-58 and having led the Cyclones to the NCAA Championships in four of her first five seasons.
  • Libero Ashley Mass and outside hitter Victoria Henson return for the Cyclones after posting All-America campaigns as juniors.
  • Mass is a two-time Big 12 Libero of the Year and in 2009 became Iowa State's first-ever first-team AVCA All-American.

Noting the Showcase

  • Each team at the 2010 Runza/AVCA Showcase enters the 2010 season ranked in the top 15 of the AVCA Coaches poll. The Huskers are the top-rated team at No. 2 in the country, while Iowa State sits ninth, Florida 13th and Kentucky 14th.
  • All four programs in Omaha this weekend are coming off solid 2009 seasons, as each advanced to a NCAA Regional. Each team finished in the top 15 of last season's final AVCA Poll, with both Iowa State and Nebraska finishing in the top 10.
  • Minnesota's trip to the 2009 Final Four continued the success of teams in the Runza/AVCA Showcase. In all, 22 former Runza/AVCA Showcase participants have played in that season's national semifinals since the event began in 1995.

Noting the Nebraska Cornhuskers

  • Nebraska begins the 2010 season as the second-winningest program in Division I history. The Huskers' 1,086 wins trail only UCLA (1,106) on the all-time list.
  • The 2009 Huskers ranked in the top 10 nationally in both kills (9th - 14.65) and assists (10th - 13.63) per set.
  • Nebraska has 11 players on its 2010 roster who were Volleyball Magazine Fab 50 selections, representing the top-50 players in that year's recruiting class. Five of the Huskers' last six recruiting classes have ranked in the top five nationally, including the 2009 class that was ranked second by

Volleyball Magazine Fab 50 Members

Year       Players
2006       Sydney Anderson
2007       Kayla Banwarth, Lindsey Licht, Tara Mueller, Brooke Delano
2008       Allison McNeal
2009       Gina Mancuso, Hannah Werth, Megan Pendergast, Hayley Thramer, Lauren Cook
2010       Morgan Broekhuis

  • Nebraska will carry a streak of 135 consecutive sellouts at the NU Coliseum into the 2010 season, the longest sellout streak across all NCAA women's athletics. The Huskers averaged 5,197 fans per home contest last season.
  • Nebraska continued its string of All-America success in 2009, as Brooke Delano and Sydney Anderson were named AVCA All-Americans. The duo upped Nebraska's NCAA-leading totals to 32 players and 67 certificates. Nebraska has had at least one All-American every season since 1983, a total of 28 straight seasons, including 32 All-America awards in Cook's 10 years at Nebraska. In fact, only seven other programs have had more AVCA All-Americans all-time than Nebraska has had in the last decade.

AVCA All-America Certificates
No.        School                 Awards
1.          Nebraska              67
2.          Stanford               62
3.          Hawaii                  48
            Penn State            48
5.          UCLA                   41

  • Head Coach John Cook returns a loaded team in 2010 that lost only one starter from 2009 and he returns 12 letterwinners. His team finished 26-7 last season, while Cook has won over 92 percent (307-26) of his matches in 10 seasons as the Huskers' leader.
  • The Huskers were pick No. 1 in the Big 12 preseason coaches' poll. The Huskers also had a conference-high four players picked to the preseason All-Big list. Seniors Sydney Anderson and Kayla Banwarth were joined by Brooke Delano and sophomore Hannah Werth.
  • Hannah Werth is coming off a freshman season that saw her earn Big 12 Freshman of the Year, honorable-mention All-America and honorable-mention All-Big 12 honors. Werth became the first freshman since Sarah Pavan in 2004 to lead the Huskers in kills at 3.18 per set.

Digging Her Own Path
Senior Kayla Banwarth is on her way to breaking NU's career record in digs, currently held by Jennifer Saleaumu (1,567). Banwarth needs just 382 digs in 2010 to break the mark and should have no problem after compiling 570 digs in 2009. Her 570 digs nearly broke Dani Busboom's 2006 single-season record of 580.

Sydney Anderson had been the latest setter to shine in the scarlet and cream, as last season she became the eighth setter in NU history to earn multiple AVCA All-America honors.

A senior in 2010, Anderson will try to become just the third setter in school history to capture All-America three times during their career at NU. If she achieves the feat, Anderson would join Griechaly Cepero (2000-02) and Fiona Nepo (1996-98).

Huskers Find Even More Talent for 2010
Head Coach John Cook brings back a team in 2010 that is nearly identical to his 2009 squad that finished the season ranked No. 5 in the country, but also includes two talented additions. The Huskers only major lose for a year ago is Kori Cooper, but NU welcomes in true freshman Morgan Broekhuis and sophomore transfer Lauren Cook to fill the void.

A 6-5 lefty from Colorado Springs, Colo., Broekhuis was one of the top seniors a year ago and was named ESPN Rise National High School Player of the Year. For the first time in school history, NU will have two 6-5 lefties on the team in Broekhuis and Lindsey Licht.

A native of Lincoln, Cook transferred to Nebraska in January of 2010 after one year at UCLA where she was named the AVCA National Freshman of the Year. Cook starred for the Bruins with 10.69 assists, 2.44 digs and 0.77 kills per set.

Second Home in Omaha
Qwest Center Omaha has been a second home to the Nebraska volleyball program over the last four years.

Since bringing the 2005 Runza/AVCA Showcase to Omaha, the Huskers have played 16 matches in the building, compiling a 15-3 record. The lone losses have been to the No. 1 Penn State in the 2008 NCAA Semifinals, No. 16 Michigan in the 2009 season opener and No. 2 Texas in the 2009 NCAA Regional Final.

Of the Huskers' 15 wins in the building, 10 have been against top-five foes, including wins over Hawaii, Stanford (three times), Florida, UCLA (twice), USC, Penn State and most recently Iowa State with a 3-0 sweep over the Cyclones during the 2009 NCAA Regional.

2010 Red/White Scrimmage Recap
Nearly 3,800 fans packed the NU Coliseum on Saturday, Aug. 21 to watch the No. 2 Nebraska volleyball team's annual Red-White Scrimmage, as the Red squad took two-of-three sets (28-26, 21-25, 25-20). After practicing in an empty gym for the nearly two weeks, the Huskers were able to get out and performer in a regular-season type of atmosphere.

Individually, Tara Mueller produced a solid night with a match-high 14 kills, Allison McNeal and Jordan Wilberger each totaled five blocks while Lauren Cook and Sydney Anderson combined for 58 assists.

Huskers Ranked Second Nationally
The Nebraska volleyball team will enter the 2010 season ranked second in the AVCA Coaches Poll, which was released Tuesday, Aug. 17. The Huskers (1,384 points) were one of three teams to receive first place votes, as No. 1 Penn State tallied the most at 40, while Nebraska was second with 16 and No. 3 Texas snagged four votes.

AVCA Preseason Top-Five Teams
No.        School            '09 Record '09 Ranking
1.         Penn State (40) 38-0                  1
2.         Nebraska (16)   26-7                  5
3.         Texas (4)          29-2                  2
4.         Stanford            23-8                  7
5.         Hawaii              32-3                  3

NU on National TV Five Times in 2010
Nebraska will start the year with two national appearances on CBS College Sports during the Runza/AVCA Showcase in Omaha at the Qwest Center during the weekend of Aug. 28-29. Next, the Huskers' Big 12 opener at Iowa State on Wednesday, Sept. 15 will be an ESPNU national telecast. Nebraska's other ESPNU telecast will come on Wednesday, Oct. 27, when the Huskers travel to Austin for the final regular-season conference match up between the two programs.

The Huskers will also be involved in the Big 12's lone FSN appearance, as the Huskers will host Texas at the Nebraska Coliseum on Saturday, Oct. 2. The previously announced start time of that match has been moved from 8 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. The match up that features two teams that have won the league in 13 of the conference's 14 years of existence.

NU Picked Big 12 Preseason No. 1
The Nebraska volleyball team was selected as the favorite to win the Big 12 Conference title in the coaches' preseason volleyball poll released Thursday, Aug. 12 by the conference office. The Huskers received nine of the 11 first-place votes, while the Texas Longhorns received the other two first-place votes to finish in the No. 2 spot.

The Big 12 North was well represented with three teams in the top five, as the No. 1 Huskers were joined by No. 3 Iowa State and No. 5 Missouri. Oklahoma was the other program picked in the top five, as the Sooners were tabbed fourth in the preseason poll.

Big 12 Preseason Poll
No.        School (First-Place Votes)         Points
1.         Nebraska (9)                             98
2.         Texas (2)                                   91
3.         Iowa State                                 84
4.         Oklahoma                                 65
5.         Missouri                                    63
6.         Baylor                                       52
7.         Texas A&M                               48
8.         Kansas                                     38
9.         Kansas State                            37
10.        Texas Tech                               15
11.        Colorado                                  14


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