The Nashville Nine!
At AVCA College Prep events we keep meticulous records of player’s scores and information. This allows us to track performance over time and also to correlate volleyball performance index scores (avcaVPI™) with college enrollment.
We have been to Nashville for two years, 2014 & 2015, working with Alliance club director, Jeff Wismer, and tournament director, Jimmy Miranda, on a College Prep Combine the night before their AAU Super Regional. 283 players participated over the two years period, 4 graduated in 2014 and 45 graduated in 2015.
Of those 49 graduates, 12 were 40%ers, i.e. their avcaVPI™ score ranked at 40% or higher when compared with college players at their position. From an athleticism standpoint, these players were ‘college ready.’
Nine of the 12, the Nashville Nine, are now on college rosters! Four are playing in DI, three in DII, and two on NAIA teams. In other words, 75% of the ‘college ready’ group was offered a roster position, and likely scholarship money, by a college coach. Breaking the analysis down by position, all three setters and four of five hitters found the right college fit, and half of the liberos.
So what happened to the other 37 graduates? 46% also found their way onto college rosters as freshman – three landed in DI, three in DII, two in DIII and nine in NAIA schools. So of the 49 graduates, over 51% reached their goal of playing college volleyball.
Let’s be clear: we are talking about correlation, not causation. The avcaVPI™ does not cause a scholarship offer, but it does take the ‘smoke and mirrors’ out of the recruiting process for both participants and college coaches by providing a validated, reliable, comparative starting point.
As we all know, evaluating volleyball skills is a contextual exercise. The interdependence inherent in the sport often makes weaker players on good teams look better than more athletic players on weak teams. The VPI is a ‘first sort’ tool, or maybe ‘a second look’ tool that helps club and college coaches avoid the mistake of leaving good athletes on the sidelines.
A final word about Nashville, there are still 46 college ready 40%ers available from the 2014 and 2015 Combines. You find them by logging in to the database and searching by event.
You can export the participants to an excel spreadsheet and/or refine your search farther by position, graduation year, and/or state. These players are college-level athletes. Don’t you want to investigate whether they can help your team?
We head back to Nashville on Friday, March 4 for the 2016 Combine. All the new avcaVPI™ scores will be available by midnight for any coach recruiting the Super Regional. You don’t need to come to the combine and waste a recruiting day. Just bring your phone, Ipad or table, and we will give you the results.