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Wisconsin volleyball: Sarah Franklin named AVCA National Player of the Year

“Frank the Tank” became the second Badger to win the nation’s highest honor in volleyball.

Syndication: Journal Sentinel
Sarah Franklin led a deep Wisconsin team with 4.15 kills per set and helped the Badgers reach a fourth Final Four in five seasons. She was named the AVCA National Player of the Year Friday.
Jovanny Hernandez / Milwaukee Journal Sentinel / USA TODAY NETWORK

Despite a crushing loss Thursday night in the Final Four to Texas, Wisconsin Badgers outside hitter Sarah Franklin gets a pretty important piece of individual hardware to take home this season.

The 6-foot-4 outside hitter was named the AVCA National Player of the Year for the 2023 season Friday afternoon.

Franklin is the second Badger to win the National Player of the Year honors after Dana Rettke won the plaudits in 2021.

Franklin was a unanimous All-Big Ten First Team, and was named to the AVCA Northeast All-Region team in addition to being named Northeast All-Region Player of the Year. Franklin was also named First Team All-American Wednesday, her second All-American award in her career.

“Frank the Tank” also was named the AVCA National Player of the Week on Nov. 28 after a huge performance to give Nebraska their only loss on the season, to go along with three Big Ten Player of the Week awards this year.

The Lake Worth, Florida-native led the Badgers with 4.15 kills per set, good for 28th best in the country.

The 6-foot-4 outside hitter tallied double-figure kills in 29 matches this season — including five matches with 20-plus kills— while also hitting .300 percent on the year. Playing all six rotations for UW, Franklin added 0.53 blocks and 0.18 aces per set. She also was solid as a passer, adding 1.93 digs per set and notched eight double-doubles.