Nebraska announced the newest class of Husker volleyball players on Wednesday afternoon as all three 2020 commits sent in their letters of intent during the first day of the November signing period.
Nebraska’s class includes middle blocker Kalynn Meyer (Superior, Nebraska), setter Annika Evans (Waverly, Nebraska) and middle blocker/outside hitter Abby Johnson (Aviston, Illinois). Meyer is the only scholarship recruit.
Freshman setter Nicole Drewnick was originally part of the 2020 class but reclassified to join the team this season and add depth behind Nicklin Hames.
"We are very pleased with the caliber of athletes who make up our 2020 class," Coach John Cook said in a release. "We are adding three outstanding young women that will undoubtedly have a very positive impact on the Nebraska volleyball program. Kalynn, Anni and Abby exemplify what it means to be a Husker, and we believe they will represent Nebraska with pride."
Meyer is a 6-foot-3 multi-sport athlete from Superior who is ranked No. 21 nationally by PrepVolleyball.com. She earned first-team Under Armour All-America honors this season, becoming the first player from Nebraska to do so since the Rolfzen twins in 2012.
As a senior, Meyer averaged 5.6 kills per set on .389 hitting while adding 77 blocks and 59 service aces, guiding the Wildcats to a 30-4 overall record and a fourth-place finish in the Class C2 state tournament. Superior made it to state and won its first-round game all four years Meyer was in the lineup, and the Wildcats captured the 2017 state championship as well.
Meyer played her club volleyball for VCNebraska and was a standout-out on the track and field and basketball teams as well at Superior. Meyer’s mother, Peggy, played volleyball at Nebraska for Coach Terry Pettit and her older sisters were track and field athletes at Nebraska as well.
"Kalynn is one of the best middles in the country and we are thrilled she chose to stay in Nebraska,” Cook said. “A talented multi-sport athlete, she comes from a true Husker family. Kalynn is dominant at the net and has a chance to contribute on the court right away.”
Evans, a 5-foot-9 setter from Waverly, originally committed to Colorado State before changing course and deciding to walk on at Nebraska instead. Evans started all four years for the Vikings, accumulating 3,294 career assists and guiding Waverly to the state semifinals in Class B in 2017 and 2018. As a senior, she averaged 10.6 assists and 3.1 digs per set with 35 service aces as the Vikings finished 29-4 on the season.
Evans also played for VCNebraska and her older bothers both played football at Nebraska.
"Anni is an exceptional setter from Waverly,” Cook said. “She took a big risk choosing to be a Husker, and we are proud to add yet another Nebraskan to our roster. She is a great all-around volleyball player with an outstanding court presence and phenomenal work ethic. Anni is a great leader and will look to lead this freshman class.”
The final signee is the only one from outside Nebraska’s borders as Johnson was a three-year starter at Breese Central in Illinois. The 6-foot-4 middle blocker/outside hitter led the Cougars to the Class 2A sectional semifinals in Illinois and a 27-11 record overall. She averaged 3.3 kills per set while hitting .358 and added 67 blocks and 16 aces as well. Johnson caught the coaches’ eyes at Nebraska’s camp over the summer where she was given the “Outstanding Player” award. She was also named the ‘Top Attacker” at Nebraska’s Dream Team Camp. She also played for St. Louis-based H2 Sports Worldwide Volleyball Club.
"Abby worked extremely hard to become a Husker,” Cook said. “After attending two camps this summer, her talent could not be denied. We knew we had to get her to Nebraska. She is without a doubt going to raise the level of competition and hard work in our gym, and her outstanding character will fit right into the Nebraska culture.”
The three new Huskers will add depth to a Nebraska team that does not have any seniors on the roster this season.
Jacob is in his third year with Hail Varsity covering Husker athletics. He has also written extensively for SB Nation’s Bright Side of the Sun and The Creightonian. His love of basketball can best be described as an obsession and if you need to find him, he’s probably in a gym somewhere watching, coaching or playing hoops.