Oct. 1, 2013
WACO, Texas - Baylor's volleyball team will be on the national stage for the first time in 2013 when the Bears play host to No. 4-ranked Texas Wednesday night at 8 p.m. at the Ferrell Center. ESPNU will televise the match as Baylor will try its luck at snapping a 22-match losing skid to last year's national champions.
Texas moved up one spot in Monday's AVCA National Top 25 to No. 4, and the Longhorns enter with an 8-2 overall record and a 2-0 mark in the Big 12. Texas has taken league wins over TCU (Sept. 25) and Oklahoma (Saturday) in three sets apiece.
After a 2-6 start, Baylor battled back to even its record at 8-8 entering conference play, but the Bears dropped their first Big 12 match on the road Saturday at No. 25 Iowa State in three sets.
Baylor last defeated Texas in 2001, which marked only the second time in school history the Bears have bettered the Longhorns in volleyball, as Texas leads the all-time series, 71-2.
Baylor head coach Jim Barnes said he knows it will take an outstanding effort to derail the visitors.
"We have to serve and pass at a very high level, and we will need at least four hitters to get hot and stay consistent," Barnes said. "We can break down their offense if we serve dough and dig everything we can."
Wednesday night's match marks the first of five times Baylor will play on television this season and the first of two opportunities to play on national television via ESPNU.
"This is a great opportunity to play the defending national champions on our home court. We are getting some players back, and the ladies are working extremely hard to get to the level we know we are capable of," said Barnes.
The Bears will also play televised games regionally against TCU Oct. 16, Kansas State Oct. 23 and Texas Tech Nov. 23. In addition, Baylor's road match with Kansas Oct. 30 is set for an ESPNU broadcast.
For Wednesday's match, Baylor is offering free t-shirts to the first 350 fans in the door. In addition, Baylor students will have a flyer entry contest for a chance to win either an Art Briles autographed football or two tickets to Baylor's football game with Texas Tech Nov. 16 in Arlington at AT&T Stadium.