Inside a Volleyball Power’s Unconventional Path to the National Spotlight

WAUNAKEE, Wis. – A few hours after practice begins with players juggling tennis balls and Def Leppard rattling through the gym, a little while after serving groups are divided into Packers fans and non-Packers fans, Kelly Sheffield sits in a wine bar and describes his first office as a college volleyball head coach. This was at Albany. He shared space with rakes, shovels and snowmobiles belonging to the grounds crew. He assumes his computer was the first one ever made. For the first home match, he scrubbed net poles wearing his suit. Thirteen people showed up.


This audience, on this Tuesday night, is into it. It should be. We’re a

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