Cassie Busse named Big Ten Player of the Year

Minnesota's Cassie Busse was named the 2003 Big Ten volleyball Player of the Year today in a vote by the conference's head coaches.

Busse is just the second Golden Gopher in school history to earn the Big Ten Player of the Year laurel and the first to hold the honor outright. Minnesota's Nicole Branagh, the Big Ten's all-time kills leader, shared the title with Wisconsin's Sherisa Livingston in 2000. Busse, a 6-2 opposite-side hitter from Prior Lake, Minn., led the Gophers to a 22-10 overall mark and a tie for second place in the Big Ten standings with a 15-5 League record. In overall action, she paced Minnesota with 4.71 kills per game and a .299 hitting percentage. Her kills average was third-best in the Big Ten, while she finished atop the Conference standings in service aces with 0.46 per game. In Big Ten action, Busse was among League leaders with 5.03 kills per game and sixth in hitting percentage with a .296 mark. The senior standout was a unanimous pick for this year's All-Big Ten Team, marking her second straight unanimous selection. Busse was tabbed as an AVCA All-America Second Team pick in 2002 and an Academic All-Big Ten honoree in 2001 and 2002.

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