Aug. 6, 2002
TUCSON, Ariz.- The Arizona volleyball team has been selected to finish third in the preseason Pac-10 Coaches Poll. The Wildcats, who received 73 votes, are coming off a season that saw them reach the first Final Four in school history, finish 25-5 overall and place third in the conference with a 14-4 mark.
Defending national champion Stanford has been picked by the coaches to defend its 2001 Pac-10 title. The Cardinal, who received seven first-place votes and 88 total votes, narrowly edged out USC for the top spot. The Women of Troy tallied 84 votes from the coaches, including three first-place votes, to finish second in the preseason poll.
Rounding out the top five behind Arizona are UCLA and Washington State, tallying 65 and 55 point, respectively.
Arizona, which opens its season Aug. 30 in Louisville, Ky., against UT-Arlington, will counter the departure of the All-Americans Dana Burkholder and Jill Talbot with four returning senior starters and the top-ranked freshman recruiting class in the nation.
The conference coaches have correctly picked the Pac-10 Champion in eight of the previous 13 polls. The following are the results of the preseason poll, coaches are not allowed to vote for their own teams (points 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2, first place votes in parentheses):
2002 Pac-10 Preseason Coaches Poll 1. Stanford (7) 88 2. USC (3) 84 3. ARIZONA 73 4. UCLA 65 5. Washington State 55 6. Oregon State 45 7. Arizona State 40 8. California 35 9. Washington 34 10. Oregon 21