For the fifth straight year, the Wisconsin Badgers volleyball team opens the season in the top-10 of the nation. The Badgers are ranked No. 9 in the 2018 American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Top-25 preseason poll.
It is the 10th time in program history that UW is ranked in the top 10 and the fifth-straight year under head coach Kelly Sheffield. Wisconsin was ranked fourth in 2016, tied for fifth in 2015, sixth in 2014, and seventh in 2017.
Stanford (leads the preseason poll after advancing to the national semifinals in 2017. Reigning NCAA champion Nebraska ranks second while Texas comes in third. Minnesota and Kentucky round out the top five, ranking fourth and fifth, respectively.
The Big Ten Conference dominates the poll with four teams in the top 10 and seven teams in the top 25. In addition to Minnesota and Wisconsin, Penn State ranks sixth while Illinois starts the season 11th. Michigan State and Purdue come in 22nd and 23rd, respectively. Michigan is the second team in the receiving votes category.
Wisconsin takes on No. 3 Texas in its home opener on September 1st in the first round of the HotelRED Invitational. UW plays at No. 16 Baylor in Waco, Texas, on September 7th.The Badgers also face two teams receiving votes during the non-conference season – Marquette and Florida State.
The Badgers will host their annual Red vs. White scrimmage on Aug. 18 at 1 pm (CT) in the UW Field House. Admission is free. The season kicks off on August 24-25 when Wisconsin travels to the Target Center in Minneapolis for the Big Ten/ACC Challenge.