Smith Named Senior CLASS Candidate

Oct. 13, 2016

FORT WORTH, Texas – For only the second time in program history, the TCU volleyball team garnered a Senior CLASS candidate as Ashley Smith was one of 30 NCAA women’s volleyball student-athletes who excel both on and off the court that was selected today as a candidate for the 2016 Senior CLASS Award in collegiate volleyball.

To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition.

"Ashley has given her all to our TCU community and volleyball program throughout her collegiate career,” Director of Volleyball Jill Kramer said. “It's great to see her recognized along with the other 30 volleyball candidates. She's gone above and beyond what is expected on the court, in the community, and the classroom. She is also a person of high character and integrity, and undoubtedly exemplifies excellence in the four Cs - community, classroom, character and competition."

Smith is a standout student-athlete and a two-time Academic All-Big 12 First Team selection who has maintained a GPA of 3.88 entering her senior year. Only three matches during the last four seasons have not featured Smith, as she has been the offensive leader and a steady presence on the court for TCU. A 2015 honorable mention AVCA All-American, the League City, Texas native will become the 10th player in TCU volleyball history to reach 1,000 kills during her career and could become the fifth player in program history to reach 1,000 digs as well. A two-time All-Big 12 selection, the outside hitter led the team to the NCAA Tournament last season for only the second time in program history and helped the team score the first victories over top-10 teams in program history the last two years. 

An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities. 

Of the 30 candidates, 27 have grade-point averages of 3.0 or higher, including 14 who maintain above a 3.5. Fifteen are returning American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) All-Americans, and nine are members of teams ranked in the AVCA Top 25 Coaches Poll. Outside of academics and athletics, all candidates also have been consistently involved in community service on their campus or in their communities.

The 30 candidates will be narrowed to 10 finalists later in the regular season, and those 10 names will be placed on the official ballot. Ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans, who will select one candidate who best exemplifies excellence in the four Cs of community, classroom, character and competition. The Senior CLASS Award winner will be announced during the 2016 NCAA Division I Women’s Volleyball Championship in December.

Volleyball Candidates
Inky Ajanaku, Stanford
Jazzmin Babers, Texas A&M
Abby Bessler, Xavier
Jess Bird, Creighton
Amy Boswell, BYU
Katie Brand, Kansas State
Hayley Farrer, Idaho State
Claire Felix, UCLA
Tessa Fournier, Seton Hall
Janey Goodman, James Madison
Carly Kan, Missouri
Grace Kauth, Cleveland State
Hannah Klemm, Hofstra
Valeria Leon, Ohio State
Dani Mostrom, Wichita State
Demi Muses, New Hampshire
Meghan Niemann, Marquette
Kayla Ostrom, Lipscomb
Megan O’Sullivan, Fairfield
Chloe Reinig, Michigan State
Kadie Rolfzen, Nebraska
Keelin Severtson, New Hampshire
Ashley Smith, TCU
Lauren Smith, Creighton
Hannah Tapp, Minnesota
Paife Tapp, Minnesota
Teegan Van Gunst, Georgia Tech
Cassie Wait, Kansas
Taylor Whittingham, Southern California

An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the Senior CLASS Award honors the attributes of senior student-athletes in four areas: community, classroom, character and competition. The award program is designed exclusively for college seniors who are utilizing their complete athletic eligibility, remaining committed to their university and pursuing the many rewards a senior season can bring. Premier Sports Management manages the award. 



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