Pepperdine outside attacker David Wieczorek garnered a record-setting amount of votes to win a national award.
Wieczorek received more than 7,000 online votes in the championship round to win the 2016 Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. Fan Choice National Player of the Year.
The Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. Fan Choice National Player of the Year recognizes the best individual performances from NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball players during the season and gives volleyball fans from around the world the chance decide the winner through online voting. The annual five-round, bracket-style tournament had more than 30,000 votes, including more than 14,000 votes in the championship round.
Wieczorek received 50.6 percent of the vote in the championship round and defeated the runner-up King outside attacker Jeff Sprayberry by 1,192 votes. Both UC Irvine opposite Michael Saeta and BYU outside attacker Brenden Sander received less than 5 percent of the vote in the four-person championship round.
The Pepperdine freshman initially earned a spot in the 64-player tournament field based on his regular season performance.
Wieczorek ended the regular season in the nation’s top 20 with a .337 attack percentage and had a 2.86 kills per game average. He also earned all-conference and Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. Freshmen All-American Team honors as he helped Pepperdine reach the MPSF Tournament quarterfinals.
Among the players Wieczorek defeated in the National Player of the Year Tournament to win the Ethan Watts Region and reach the championship round included Penn State outside attacker Chris Nugent, Loyola middle attacker Jeff Jendryk, Stanford middle attacker Conrad Kaminski and Pepperdine middle attacker Tommy Carmody.
This is sixth year of the Fan Choice National Player of the Year. Previous winners include Loyola outside attacker Mike Bunting in 2011, Ball State middle attacker Matt Leske in 2012, IPFW outside attacker Eddie Rivera in 2013, the BYU outside attacker Taylor Sander in 2014 and Coker opposite Artur Cabral last year.
Off the Block is a website that launched in 2011 and is among the nation’s leaders in college men’s volleyball coverage. Springbak, Inc. is the official sponsor of the 2016 Fan Choice National Player of the Year and produces high performance footwear used by professional athletes from the NFL, NBA, MLB and U.S. Olympic teams and the top college teams in the nation.