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Nebraska national championship celebration, 12/17

Nebraska players, coaches and staff pose with the national championship trophy on Sunday, Dec. 17, 2017, during a celebration at Devaney Sports Center.

The Nebraska volleyball team was never ranked higher than No. 4 in the AVCA poll during the 2017 season until now.

After winning the national championship on Saturday with a four-set win against Florida, Nebraska moved up to the No. 1 ranking in the final poll of the season, which was released on Monday afternoon.

The Huskers were ranked No. 5 going into the NCAA Tournament. In its final three matches of the tournament, Nebraska defeated then-No. 6 Kentucky, No. 1 Penn State and No. 3 Florida.

Nebraska finished the season with a 32-4 record. That’s the same record as the Huskers’ last national championship season, in 2015.

In the past three years combined Nebraska has a 95-11 record and has reached the NCAA Final Four each season. The team has two Big Ten Conference championships, and two NCAA championships, in the past three years.

NU received all 64 first-place votes in the poll. Florida is ranked second, followed by Penn State, Stanford, Texas and Kentucky.

Creighton is ranked No. 16 in the poll, after finishing with a 26-7 record and losing in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

Seven Big Ten Conference teams are ranked: Nebraska, Penn State, No. 8 Michigan State, No. 10 Minnesota, No. 12 Wisconsin, No. 17 Illinois and No. 18 Purdue.

The last time Nebraska was ranked No. 1 was during the final week of the 2016 regular season. Since the AVCA poll began, Nebraska has been ranked No. 1 a record 99 times, four more than Penn State.

— Brent C. Wagner

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Sports reporter

Brent has worked at the Journal Star for 14 years. His beats include Nebraska volleyball, women's basketball and high school soccer and cross country.

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