The Nebraska volleyball team came in at No. 7 in the preseason AVCA Coaches’ poll, released on Monday. The Huskers return all but one starter from last year’s team, which finished with a 26-7 record, a trip to the NCAA Regional Final and a No. 7 final ranking.
The preseason poll had a Big Ten flare, as seven conference teams earned a spot in the top 25, while Michigan was receiving votes. Six of the top 12 teams in the preseason poll were from the Big Ten Conference. Defending national champion Penn State was picked first, followed by Texas, Stanford, Washington and USC. Wisconsin, the 2013 national runner-up, came in one spot ahead of Nebraska at No. 6, while Purdue was ranked eighth. BYU and Florida, respectively, rounded out the top 10.
With the release of the first 2014 weekly poll, the Huskers have now been ranked in each of the AVCA’s 462 all-time polls, dating back to 1982. Nebraska has been ranked in the top 10 in 418 of those 462 polls, the highest total of any team in the country.
Nebraska’s ranking will be put to the test throughout this season. The Huskers will face a ranked opponent in 13 of their 29 matches this season, including six matchups with top-10 opponents. NU will face the top three teams in the preseason poll a total of four times, beginning with a contest against No. 3 Stanford in the second game of the season at the Devaney Center on Sunday, Aug. 31.
The Huskers open their season on Friday, Aug. 29, against 13th-ranked Florida State Seminoles. The back-to-back matchups with FSU and Stanford are part of the AVCA Showcase at the Devaney Center.
Head Coach John Cook previewed the 2014 season on Monday at a preseason press conference.