The Colorado State volleyball team was once again picked as the preseason favorite to win the Mountain West Conference in the 2017 coach’s poll. The Rams received eight first place votes and had a total of 98 points in the poll.
The 13-time Mountain West regular season champion Rams also placed four athletes on the preseason All-Mountain West squad out of a total of seven slots. Seniors Alexandra Poletto and Sanja Cizmic were selected, alongside sophomores Katie Oleksak and Kirstie Hillyer. It is the first time that Cizmic, Hillyer and Oleksak have made the preseason list while Poletto makes her second career appearance.
Boise State’s Sierra Nobley was named the preseason Player of the Year joining teammate Maddi Osburn on the All-Mountain West squad. San Diego State’s Deja Harris rounded out the seven selections.
CSU received 55 points in the national coach’s poll on Aug. 9 and were voted the Mountain West favorite for the fourth straight year.
Last year’s champions, Boise State, might have a different opinion since they were only five points behind the Rams in the Mountain West poll with 93. The Broncos received three first place votes and also had 21 points in the national coach’s poll.
Out of the nine other times the Rams have been named preseason favorites, they have gone on to take the title seven times. In the 18 year history of the MW, the Rams hold a 268-44 (.859) record and have won the regular season title 13 times.
CSU will begin their march to another MW title with their non-conference schedule beginning on Aug. 25 at home against Duke University. The Rams will open up conference play on Sep. 21 against New Mexico and will play Boise State twice. The first matchup will be at Boise on Oct. 5 with rematch coming in Fort Collins on Nov. 4.
1. Colorado State (8) – 98
2. Boise State (3) – 93
3. San Diego State – 79
4. Wyoming – 67
5. Nevada – 57
6. Utah State – 51
7. UNLV – 42
8. San José State – 38
9. New Mexico – 37
10. Fresno State – 29
11. Air Force – 14
Sierra Nobley, Sr., OH, Boise State (Preseason Player of the Year)
Maddi Osburn, Sr., L, Boise State
Sanja Cizmic, Sr., OH, Colorado State
Kirstie Hillyer, R-So., MB, Colorado State
Katie Oleksak, So., S, Colorado State
Alexandra Poletto, Sr., MB, Colorado State
Deja Harris, Jr., MB, San Diego State
Collegian sports reporter Austin White can be reached by email at email@example.com or on Twitter @ajwrules44.