Monday, 26 February 2024

International Volleyball

A great year and tremendous coverage: Best NCAA volleyball stories from 2023

NCAA volleyball championship stunner! Texas sweeps Nebraska

There has never been a season like it.

NCAA women’s volleyball attendance and TV ratings were broken seemingly every day. The competition was fantastic and interest has never been higher. Here at VolleyballMag, we have shattered our previous best page-views record and NCAA women’s volleyball was a huge part of that accomplishment.

Here’s a chronological look back at 2023 and our top NCAA women’s posts. Click on any highlighted link to read that story from a year that amazed us throughout.

There was tremendous interest in two interviews we did with retiring coaches, Joe Sagula of North Carolina and Dave Rubio of Arizona. The veteran stalwarts of our sport had a lot to say about their jobs and how much college volleyball has changed:

One of our most viewed posts was Lincoln Arneal’s February Q&A with Nebraska coach John Cook: 

Speaking of Nebraska, this was a big story in February when Nebraska announced it would play a match in its football stadium. There were, of course, more stories to come about that event:

This story the day before the match was a big hit:

And then Nebraska played Omaha before 92,003. Arneal covered it and Matt Smith had some great photos:

Two stories that went up three days apart were quite significant. The first announced Jaime Gordon as the new executive director of the AVCA; the second told about the death of longtime American University coach Barry Goldberg, a great guy taken from us way too soon by cancer:

One feature that was spot on was Chuck Curti’s piece about Grand Canyon and how it was making big strides in women’s, beach and men’s volleyball:

Photographer Zach Schuster showed he can write, too, with this piece on former Wisconsin setter Sydney Hilley, who made a Madison homecoming with Athletes Unlimited last April:

Dennis Punzel previewed Wisconsin’s trip to Europe which was quite an adventure:

This feature was something else. Chuck Curti wrote about former Eastern Michigan outside Franki Strefling, who has become a pro wrestler:

Right before the season we were able to get the band back together for a video as Emily Ehman and I were joined by Notre Dame coach Salima Rockwell and Southern Miss coach Jenny Hazelwood:

We were only able to get together one more time, a month later, but man did we laugh:

Curti featured Howard’s Rya McKinnon, who went on to repeat as the MEAC player of the year:

Curti wrote about Western Michigan, which went on to win the MAC and pull off the…

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