Before Jessica Cleveland arrived as McPherson College volleyball coach, the Bulldogs were consistently in the second division of the KCAC.
In her first two years the Bulldogs have twice broken the school record for single-season wins and made the KCAC Tournament Final Four last year. They finished 22-12 last season after posting a 21-12 record in 2016.
The Bulldogs certainly have earned the respect from other KCAC coaches as today they were picked No. 3 in the annual conference preseason poll, including a first-place vote. Mac has four starters back who earned some type of KCAC postseason mention and has a Player of the Year candidate in Lexi Kite, a two-time KCAC first-team selection.
Ottawa and Kansas Wesleyan were picked ahead of the Bulldogs, with the Braves receiving 8 first-place votes and the Coyotes 4.
Oklahoma Wesleyan is No. 4, followed by Tabor, Saint Mary, Sterling, Friends, Bethany, Avila, Southwestern, York and Bethel.
Here is the poll:
1. Ottawa University, 140
2. Kansas Wesleyan University, 133
3. McPherson College, 121
4. Oklahoma Wesleyan University, 105
5. Tabor College, 95
6. University of Saint Mary, 82
7. Sterling College75
8. Friends University, 74
9. Bethany College, 49
10. Avila University, 46
11. Southwestern College, 41
12. York College, 27
13. Bethel College, 26