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NCAA Womens Volleyball

Sarah Franklin wins National Player of the Year

Sarah Franklin wins National Player of the Year


TAMPA, Fla. — Adding to her collection of awards in 2023, Wisconsin volleyball’s Sarah Franklin can now add the most prestigious award to her resume, American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) National Player of the year. The award was announced Friday morning at the AVCA All-American Banquet. 

The six-foot-four outside hitter now joins Badger middle blocker Dana Rettke as just the second player in program history to win the award. Rettke won back in 2021.

From the start of her collegiate career, Franklin made waves from the get-go. The outside hitter tallied First-Team All-Big Ten honors as well as AVCA North All-Region team as a sophomore. After transferring from Michigan State to Wisconsin, Franklin was named to the All-Big Ten First team twice, named to the AVCA Northeast All-Region team twice, and collected AVCA All-American Third Team status as a junior. In 2022, she was also named to the US Collegiate National team where she trained with Team USA.

So far, Franklin’s senior season is the best of her career both statistically and in accolades. In 2023, Franklin was a unanimous All-Big Ten First Team, and was named to the AVCA Northeast All-Region team in addition to being named Northeast All-Region Player of the Year. In this year’s Regional, Franklin was named Most Outstanding Player in the Madison Regional. On December 13, Franklin was named First Team All-American, her second All-American award in her career. 

Additionally, Franklin was named the AVCA National Player of the Week on Nov. 28 to go along with three Big Ten Player of the Week awards this year. 

Statistically this season, Franklin leads the Badgers with 4.15 kills per set, which ranks 28th nationally. The 6-foot-4 outside hitter has double-figure kills in 29 matches this season, including five matches with 20-plus kills. Franklin is also hitting a season best .300 percent. She averages 4.62 points per set, adding 0.53 blocks and 0.18 service aces per set. One of the Badgers’ primary passers, the Lake Worth, Florida, native adds 1.93 digs per set. In total, Franklin accumulated eight double-doubles.

Franklin and the Badgers ended the season 30-4, finishing 2023 at the NCAA National Semifinals in Tampa, Fla. 

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