A nationwide voting committee selected 10 players to the annual Off the Block Freshmen All-American Team that was unveiled Wednesday.
The Off the Block Freshmen All-American Team honors the top NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball freshmen players from the regular season. This is the ninth year Off the Block has presented the national honor, which remains the only Freshmen All-American Team presented in college men’s volleyball.
Pepperdine was the only school to have multiple players earn the Freshman All-American honors. Long Beach State, Loyola, NJIT, Ohio State, Purdue Fort Wayne, Stanford, UC Irvine and UCLA each had one freshman on the team.
Players eligible for this award must have been listed as a freshman or redshirt freshman on the active roster for a NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball team. In addition, eligible freshmen or redshirt freshmen must have been in their first college season or played five or fewer matches during the abbreviated 2020 season.
A voting committee more than 20 men’s volleyball coaches and volleyball media members determined the Freshmen All-American Team. A player making the Freshmen All-American Team had to be among the top 10 vote-getters and appear on at least one-fourth of all the fully submitted voting ballots.
Ohio State outside attacker Sotiris Siapanis received the most votes from the nationwide voting committee.
Off the Block is a national award winning website that launched in 2011 and is the nation’s leader in college men’s volleyball coverage.
Off the Block annually presents college men’s volleyball national awards to recognize outstanding individual performances in the sport. Along with the Freshmen All-American Team, Off the Block during the regular season presents the National Freshman of the Week.
2021 Off the Block Freshmen All-American Team
Setter: Bryce Dvorak, Pepperdine
Setter: Griffin Fieseler, NJIT
Opposite: Kupono Browne, Stanford
Outside attacker: Ethan Champlin, UCLA
Outside attacker: Vicente Ibarra, Purdue Fort Wayne
Outside attacker: Francesco Sani, UC Irvine
Outside attacker: Sotiris Siapanis, Ohio State
Outside attacker: Clarke Godbold, Long Beach State
Middle attacker: Jimmy Meinhart, Loyola
Libero: Trey Cole, Pepperdine
Bryce Dvorak, Pepperdine
Dvorak was in the nation’s top 25 with a 9.15 assists per game average and guided the offense to the ninth-best attack percentage in the nation at .306. In addition, Dvorak helped the Waves earn one of the two at-large bids to the NCAA Tournament.
Griffin Fieseler, NJIT
Fieseler was third in the EIVA with a 9.20 assists per game average and led the offense to the eighth-best attack percentage in the nation at .314. He also helped the Highlanders earn their highest national ranking in program history.
Kupono Browne, Stanford
Browne had double-digit kills in four matches, including a season-high 22 kills on a .362 attack percentage in a loss to Pepperdine in February.
Ethan Champlin, UCLA
Champlin was among the UCLA and MPSF leaders with a 2.62 kills per game average. The outside attacker had double-digit kills in seven matches, including a season-high 18 kills on a .441 attack percentage in a victory against Stanford in March.
Vicente Ibarra, Purdue Fort Wayne
Ibarra was in the nation’s top 25 with a 3.69 kills per game average and had at least 20 digs in five matches. Among his top performances of the season included 21 kills and a season-high 12 digs in a near-upset of McKendree in the MIVA Tournament quarterfinals.
Francesco Sani, UC Irvine
Sani finished with double-digit kills in six matches and hit at least .300 in five matches. The outside attacker in a two-match series against No. 1/1 Hawai’i had a combined 21 kills on a .389 attack percentage.
Sotiris Siapanis, Ohio State
Siapanis in his first season was eighth in the nation with a 4.12 kills per game average and was in the nation’s top 15 hitting .356. The outside attacker had double-digit kills in every match, including a season-high 25 kills on a .308 attack percentage against Ball State in the MIVA Tournament quarterfinals.
Clarke Godbold, Long Beach State
Godbold finished in the top 15 of the Big West with both a 2.51 kills per game average and a 1.56 digs per game average. The outside attacker also had both a season-high 13 kills and 10 digs in an upset victory against UC Santa Barbara in March.
Jimmy Meinhart, Loyola
Meinhart was 11th in the nation with a 1.09 blocks per game average and had at least five blocks in seven matches. The middle attack also hit .331, including a season-high eight kills and zero errors on an .800 attack percentage against Purdue Fort Wayne in February.
Trey Cole, Pepperdine
Cole at least five digs in 11 matches during his freshman season, including a season-high 18 digs in a season-opening victory against Concordia-Irvine.