Nebraska Volleyball Preview: Creighton, VERT, New Players

Nebraska Volleyball Preview: Creighton, VERT, New Players
The volleyball court at the Devaney Center has a natural wood color surrounded by red with no midcourt logo. (World-Herald News Service)

The Creighton volleyball team announced its full 2018 schedule this week, which includes a September 6th date with Nebraska. Nebraska head coach John Cook says Nebraska’s schedule should be released soon, once the Big Ten conference finalizes TV contracts and other details.

Cook confirmed that Nebraska will be hosting the VERT Challenge tournament this season, welcoming powerhouses Texas, Florida and Oregon to Lincoln. The Huskers will also host Iowa State along with MVC regular season and tournament champion Missouri State.

One big change this offseason for college volleyball has to do with recruiting. The NCAA announced in April that prospects in sports other than football and basketball can now make official visits starting September 1st of their junior years.

The Huskers will have seven new players on their 2018 roster, including sophomore outside hitter Lexi Sun, who transferred in from Texas last month. Cook admits that transfers can sometimes throw off a team’s chemistry, but in this case, Sun could fit right in.

Nebraska returns several pieces from last year’s championship team, including senior outside hitter Mikaela Foecke, senior defensive specialist and libero Kenzie Maloney, sophomore outside hitter Jazz Sweet and sophomore middle blocker Lauren Stivrins.

The biggest position of question right now for the Huskers is setter. Nebraska must replace three-time All American and 2017 Big Ten Setter of the Year Kelly Hunter. Freshman Nicklin Hames is the only setter on roster right now, but Cook says that’s not the only position up for grabs.

It’ll be a busy summer for Cook and his team. USA Volleyball and the U.S. Women’s National Volleyball team will host the opening week of the inagural FIVB Volleyball Nations League May 15-17 at the Devaney Center. Some players will be starting summer school around the same time.

Nebraska will start summer camps on June 1 and summer school on June 3. Fall camp will start in the beginning of August.