Aug. 15, 2011
By Nic Hallisey
Athletic Media Relations
FORT COLLINS, Colo.--The Colorado State women's volleyball team will open the 2011 season ranked No. 15 in the nation. The American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) made the announcement Monday.
"That's a bit high for a team that lost four starters," Head Coach Tom Hilbert said, "but it shows the respect our program gets nationwide."
The Rams will bring plenty of youth to the court in 2011, having eight true or redshirt freshmen on the roster after losing four starters from 2010, including three all-Mountain West selections and two All-America honorable mentions.
Despite the losses from the 2010 team that went 26-5 and advanced to the second round of the NCAA tournament and was ranked No. 16 in the final 2010 poll, the Rams were still selected to the AVCA coaches top 25 preseason poll for the fourth consecutive season.
The No. 15 ranking marks the highest received by CSU in the preseason poll since being ranked No. 11 to open 2004. Nebraska and Oklahoma, two of CSU's first five opponents of the season, were also ranked in the top 25. The Cornhuskers will open 2011 as the No. 5 team, while the Sooners begin the year one spot behind the Rams at No. 16.
CSU begins competition in less than two weeks, competing in the four-team Arkansas Invitational, beginning Aug. 26, and hosting Nebraska in the highly anticipated match of the season on Sept. 2.
For the complete preseason AVCA top 25 coaches poll, click here.