January 19, 2017
2016 Big 12 Volleyball Final Release in PDF
Big 12 volleyball compiled an impressive season as the league saw six teams punch tickets to the NCAA postseason. Several programs celebrated milestones, and the Conference had a new league champion. Here are some of the highlights from the 2016 volleyball season:
- The six NCAA bids this year matched the third-highest in league history and most since 2011 (seven). It was also the highest total for the Conference since it began competition as a nine-team league in 2011.
- The American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) named thirteen Big 12 student-athletes to its All-America teams, including three first team honorees. Seventy-eight percent of the conference was represented on the list, led by Kansas with four selections followed by Texas with three.
- Texas made its second-straight and fifth overall appearance in the NCAA national championship game in Columbus, Ohio. UT swept four opponents during the postseason and compiled a 5-1 record to end the year at No. 2 in the AVCA Coaches Poll.
- Kansas won the Big 12 regular season title for the first time in league history and earned its highest NCAA tournament seed (No. 5) in program history. Kelsie Payne was selected as the Big 12 Player of the Year while teammates Cassie Wait earned Libero of the Year and Ainise Havili was named Setter of the Year.
- Ray Bechard (Kansas) received Coach of the Year honors for the fourth time in five years.
- The Big 12 entered the NCAA tournament with the fewest non-conference losses in the nation (30) and as one of three leagues with a non-conference win percentage of .730 or higher.
- The league had a contender in the national semifinals for the eighth-consecutive season (Texas).
- The league’s three national seed rankings in the NCAA Championship tied as second-most among all conferences.
- The Big 12 was the only conference with at least 66 percent of its teams in the top 42 of the NCAA RPI poll.
- Six of the league’s nine teams owned winning percentages of .500 or higher with five teams over .600.
- Baylor made its first NCAA appearance since 2011 after posting its most overall wins since 2009. Katie Staiger, a Second Team All-American and All-Big 12 first team selection, led the league and ranked third nationally with 698 kills.
- Kansas State recorded its fifth NCAA appearance in six years, led by Katie Brand, a second team Senior CLASS Award All-American.
- Iowa State advanced to its 11th-consecutive NCAA tournament and led the league in digs for the fifth time in six years.
- TCU made its third NCAA postseason appearance, advancing to the second round for the second time in program history. Coach Jill Kramer recorded her 100th career victory in the NCAA first round.
- Texas coach Jerritt Elliott recorded his 400th UT victory on Nov. 19, now tallying a 406-93 record in 16 seasons.
- Freshman of the Year Micaya White (Texas) tied for the most weekly honors ever recieved by a Big 12 individual (eight).