[caption id="attachment_246204" align="aligncenter" width="600"] Photo by Chet White | UK Athletics
Stop me if you've heard this before: the University of Kentucky has the No. 1 recruiting class in the country. But in this case, the ball is served over a net instead of being shot through it.
released its top-30 recruiting team rankings for the 2020 class and the Kentucky volleyball team topped the chart, bringing in five premier players for the upcoming year. Rounding out the top-5 behind the 'Cats are Minnesota, Texas, Wisconsin, and Michigan.
Head coach Craig Skinner is coming off a 25-7 season that saw his squad make it to the Sweet 16 before falling to Washington. He's about to enter his 16th year in Lexington and is currently the all-time winningest coach in program history. He's led the Wildcats to 15 consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances and has won the SEC the last three years running. The top volleyball players are taking notice of his continued success.
UK Athletics put out a press release that gives fans a bit more information on the star-studded group of ladies.
Outside Hitter; Fort Mill, South Carolina
- Under Armour All-American
- Played her club volleyball for Adam Speight and the Carolina Rogue
- PrepVolleyball First Team All-American
- 2018 & 2019 South Carolina state champion
- Ranked as the #15 player in the Class of 2020
- South Carolina Gatorade Player of the Year in 2018
Middle Blocker; Blue Mounds, Wisconsin
- Ranked as the No. 27 recruit in the country by PrepVolleyball
- Second-Team AVCA Under Armour All-American
- First Team All-Conference in 2017, 2018 and 2019
- First Team All-State in 2018 and 2019
- Achieved 1,400 kills in three years on her varsity team
- Also a track athlete, as she was a Regional and Sectional champion in the high jump in 2018
Opposite/Setter; Missouri City, Texas
- Ranked as the No. 10 recruit in the country by PrepVolleyball
- First-Team AVCA Under Armour All-American
- Senior season was John Turner Adidas All-Tournament and Fraulein Fest All-Tournament
- Junior year was the Greater Houston Volleyball Coaches' Association Player of the Year
- Texas Volleyball Coaches' Association All-State Team and District Setter of the Year (2018)
- State runner's up in 2018 and District champions in 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019
Outside Hitter; Katy, Texas
- Ranked as the No. 2 recruit in the country by PrepVolleyball
- Sister of Avery Skinner, a current junior for the Wildcats
- PrepVolleyball Top 50 Juniors list member
- 2019 Girls Junior National Championship All-Tournament Team
- 2019 AVCA Under Armour Third Team All-American
- 2019 PrepVolleyball All-American
Libero; Sarasota, Florida
- 2016 and 2018 AVCA Under Armour All-American
- Max Preps All-American
- Member of the PrepVolleyball Class of 2020 Senior Aces list
- Broke the Riverview HS record twice with 50 and 67 digs in a single match
- Florida All-State Team member
- Junior Nationals All-Tournament Team member in 2015 and 2017
Madi Skinner appears to be the prized recruit, considering she's ranked No. 2 in the nation and is the sister of Avery Skinner, who is a rising senior and also plays volleyball at Kentucky. Alongside her, UK also added the No. 10, No. 15, and No. 27 players in the country.
Pretty good haul for a volleyball school.