2012 Volleyball Preview Part 2: Setters
Aug. 16, 2012
Tulsa, Oklahoma - The University of Tulsa volleyball team returns one of the best setter tandems in the conference with the sister combination of Jordan and Bailey Clampitt.
The sisters have been able to thrive under Head Coach Steven McRoberts' offense, which features the use of two setters. Once the team switched to the new offense early on in the 2011 season, Tulsa went 23-3 and improved its kills by nearly 1.2 per set.
Jordan, a three-year letterwinner at TU, ranks third at Tulsa in career assists with 3,140. Last year, she totaled 980 assists and 229 digs while the team transitioned from a 5-1 into a 6-2 offense.
In 2010, the older Clampitt, Jordan, was named the Conference-USA Setter of the Year and earned AVCA Honorable Mention All-America accolades while she led the NCAA with 13.09 assists per set and established a TU single-season record with 1,492 assists.
"Jordan has a very calming influence on the team," McRoberts said. "She has been on the floor for three years and is the type of the player that will do anything for a teammate. She plays hurt and plays sick, and she has that inner-competiveness that goes a long ways to help a program. As a coach, it's nice to have a setter that is a leader on the floor for you. I have seen her grow the past year and a half as a player. I feel like she is the best setter in the conference and I think she is overlooked because she only plays half the rotations."
Bailey played the final 28 matches for the Hurricane last season once the squad switched into its new offense. She had 540 assists on the season and 131 digs.
"Bailey came in last year as a freshmen and wanted to compete for a spot," commented McRoberts. "I don't know if she thought she would get an opportunity knowing the type of season her sister just had. When we plugged her in, she had to learn on the run. I feel she is one of the players that will make us a better team this year. She got stronger and in better shape this spring and I think that made her mentally tougher.
McRoberts believes the tandem has excelled once they got the new offensive system under their belts.
"The three rotations Jordan has been running in practice have been really competitive. The two of them do a really good job running our offense. It has been a change, especially for Jordan, because it is a different offense than what she played her first two years. It is very exciting to keep these two for another year," added McRoberts.
McRoberts says the familiarity that the setters have with the outside hitters is one of the biggest strengths of the Hurricane.
"The connection that these two have with the returning players really helps our team click," said McRoberts. "You can watch Jordan and Tyler (Henderson) and a lot of times it seems like they have a second sense of what the other one is going to do. Familiarity with a setter is huge, just like a wide receiver with a quarterback. You just get to know how they deliver the ball, what to expect in certain situations and you get better because of that. That connection is one reason why our returning players have an advantage over the freshmen. Once those freshmen get used to Jordan and Bailey it evens out the playing field a little."
TU begins its quest for a third consecutive NCAA Tournament berth at the Nike Invitational August 24-25 in Norman, Okla. The Hurricane will face off against Western Michigan, Missouri State and Oklahoma during the two-day affair. After a road trip to Arkansas to face the Razorbacks on August 28, the Hurricane will make its way up to Lawrence, Kan., to take part in the Kansas Volleyball Invitational on August 31 and September 1. TU will have contests against Arkansas State, Kansas and Nebraska-Omaha.
A cross-town rivalry game at Oral Roberts on September 4 marks the team's return to the state before they play in their final road tournament in the Northern Colorado Tournament. TU will face Northern Colorado, Creighton and Ball State on September 7 and 8 in Greely, Colo.
Tulsa will play its first home games of the season September 13-15 with the Tulsa Classic. The classic features four NCAA Tournament squads from a year ago in Tulsa, Kansas State, Dayton and Minnesota. The Golden Hurricane kick off its conference slate a week later on September 19 when it hosts SMU, the only C-USA squad to beat TU a season ago. All Tulsa regular season games are free to the public.
TU will host the Conference USA Championship Nov. 16-18 in the Reynolds Center. This marks the first conference tournament since the 2009 campaign.
For all Tulsa volleyball news and information, visit www.TulsaHurricane.com. Follow Tulsa Athletics on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/TulsaHurricane and Facebook at www.facebook.com/TulsaHurricane. Follow Tulsa Volleyball on Twitter (www.twitter.com/TulsaVolleyball) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/TulsaVolleyball).
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