SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – The UC Santa Barbara men's volleyball team was ranked third in the American Volleyball Coaches Association' preseason poll for the 2021 season, the organization announced earlier this week.
The Gauchos have the second-highest ranking among Big West Conference teams, which occupy five of the spots in the top seven. UCSB is one rank below Hawai'i but above Long Beach State (4th), UC Irvine (6th), and UC San Diego (T-7th).
The top spot in the poll went to BYU, which garnered 238 points, including all 14 first-place votes. Hawai'i collected 224 points and UCSB followed with 200.
Prior to the cancellation of the 2020 men's volleyball season in March, UCSB was off to a 14-2 start, claiming wins at Stanford, UCLA, Ohio State, and USC, with its only losses coming against second-ranked BYU in Provo, Utah. At the time of the cancellation, the Gauchos were on an eight-game winning streak.
Four Gauchos in senior opposite hitter Randy DeWeese, senior setter Casey McGarry, senior middle blocker Keenan Sanders, and senior outside hitter Roy McFarland earned selection to both the All-Big West teams and to the AVCA All-America lists at the conclusion of last season. Head coach Rick McLaughlin was selected as the Big West Coach of the Year and the AVCA National Coach of the Year.
Information about the 2021 season will be released on a later date on UCSBGauchos.com.
2021 AVCA MEN'S VOLLEYBALL PRESEASON POLL
|3||UC Santa Barbara||200|
|4||Long Beach State||191|
|7||UC San Diego||123|
( ) First place votes