The AVCA has released its 2009 Preseason Coaches Top 25 Poll , and Penn State is #1. And 0-0. Which is the same record as #2 Texas (which received six first-place votes) and Washington (which received two). Rich Kern has also released his preseason poll , which also ranks Penn State #1.
We like Rich Kern’s poll better, because it includes a comparison to the Pablo Rankings, the AVCA Poll, and the Volleyball Magazine Poll, and also because it ranks Penn State’s Big Ten opponents Minnesota at #8 and Illinois at #10, whereas the AVCA poll has Minnesota at #11 (although it keeps Illinois at #10).
[Editors note: For those of you who aren’t familiar with Rich Kern’s site, it is a terrific source of statistical, recruiting, and other information about women’s volleyball.]
Preseason polls (actually, polls in general) are something that fans love to talk about and coaches have no choice but to tolerate. In this case, the AVCA wasn’t satisfied that their voters had perched PSU at the top of the heap, where everyone can take a poke at them, they also captioned the link to their poll write-up: “Nittany Lions poised for three-peat with solid core of returners” (just in case any Penn State fans were harboring foolish doubts about the inevitability of it all, or any coaches or players on other teams had not yet worked themselves into a frenzy at the thought of knocking off the Nits). (gopsusports also posted a write-up)
Personally, we’re optimistic by nature, but we do think it’s a bit premature to annoint the 2009 Penn State Women’s Volleyball team as Three-Peaters just yet. After all, they did lose AVCA National Player of the Year Nicole Fawcett, two-time AVCA First Team All-American Christa Harmotto, and starting libero Roberta Holehouse. On the other hand, it’s only ten days until August 28th, when Penn State faces Miami (Oh) in St. Louis at 5:00 p.m. CT, so we’ll have actual match results to talk about (OK, argue about) soon enough.
Until then? We’re #1! We’re 0-0!