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LEXINGTON, Ky. -- The Colorado State volleyball team will open the 2014 season ranked, being tabbed at No. 18 in the AVCA Division I Coaches Preseason Poll. Voting was conducted by Division I head coaches, and the poll was released by the AVCA on Monday.
CSU has been ranked or receiving votes in all 19 preseason polls since Head Coach Tom Hilbert's arrival to Fort Collins in 1997. The No. 18 position is the program's highest preseason ranking since 2011, when the Rams began the year at No. 15.
In their history, the Rams have been ranked in 250 of the 462 all-time polls, 14th-best in the nation.
Two of CSU's 2014 opponents are ranked in the top 10 of the preseason poll - Wisconsin (No. 6) and BYU (No. 9). The Badgers, the 2013 NCAA runner-up, earned eight first-place votes. Additionally, four other opponents are ranked or receiving votes: Arizona State (25), Marquette, UC Santa Barbara and conference foe New Mexico.
In total, six of CSU's 13 non-conference opponents played in the 2013 NCAA tournament.
Penn State, last year's national champion, will begin the year ranked No. 1, followed by Texas, Stanford, Washington and USC.
CSU began the 2013 season receiving votes before moving into the top 25 three weeks in. The Rams were ranked in the top 10 for five weeks - peaking at No. 9 - and finished the year ranked No. 21.
CSU reported for fall camp on Sunday and began practices Monday morning. The five-time defending Mountain West champions will begin the 2014 season on Aug. 30 against VCU. Ticket packages can be purchased here.
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