Utah was ranked as high as No. 9 last season, ending the year ranked 15th.
Aug. 14, 2007
SALT LAKE CITY - The University of Utah begins the season ranked No. 21 in the CSTV/American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Preseason Coaches Poll, released earlier today.
The Utes are one of two Mountain West Conference schools ranked in the poll. Brigham Young comes in at No. 17. Colorado State was listed as receiving votes.
"I think it shows great respect for winning tradition of our program," head coach Beth Launiere said. "With that said, all that matters to us is getting ready for our opening match."
In addition to BYU, Utah takes on four teams ranked in the preseason top 25. The Utes open the season in the AVCA Showcase on Aug. 24 against fifth-ranked UCLA. USC (Sept. 7) and Florida (Sept. 9) are sixth and seventh, respectively. Utah also plays No. 13 Purdue at the Purdue Mortar Board Tournament on Sept. 1. Other Ute opponents receiving votes are New Mexico State and Tennessee.
Defending national champion Nebraska, which hosts the AVCA Showcase and could face the Utes in the second game of the tournament, leads the poll with 53 first-place votes.
Last year, Utah went 28-4 overall and 16-0 in MWC regular season action, reaching the second round of the NCAA Championship and setting school records with 28 wins and a 25-match winning streak. The Utes return AVCA third-team All-American Whitney Webb, as well as four other starters from the 2006 squad.