1992 Men's National Player of the Year
Long Beach State's Brent Hilliard Named AVCA National Player of the Year
San Mateo, Calif. - Brent Hilliard, 6-5 junior outside hitter from Long Beach State University, has been named the 1992 AVCA National Player of the Year for NCAA men's volleyball.
A three-year starter for head coach Ray Ratelle, Hilliard was the offensive ringleader for the 49ers in a season which saw Long Beach State win 27 of 31 matches, capture the regular season title in the Wilson Division of the WIVA, and hold the number one ranking for 12 weeks in the Tachikara Coaches poll. Losses to Pepperdine and Cal State Northridge have eliminated the 49ers from defending its NCAA title won last May in Honolulu.
Only a junior, Hilliard ranked nationally in kills per game (7.02) while hitting at a 0.400 clip. Named to the prestigious all-WIVA first team for the second year in a row, he added 26 service aces, 174 digs and 78 blocks for the 49ers. He was named WIVA Player of the Week on March 16 and was also voted to the ASICS Grand Prix All-Tournament Team. He plans to rejoin the USA National Team next month after leaving the team last January to return to Long Beach State for his junior season.
Without question one of the most terminating offensive players in the history of intercollegiate men's volleyball, Hilliard has already inked his name near or at the top of several all-time NCAA charts with still his senior season to play. His 712 season kills pushed his career total to 2,274, just 106 shy of the all-time record held by former USC great Bryan Ivie. Able to crank out kills in large numbers, Hilliard had 29 matches with double figure kills this season, 20 of which went for over 20 kills. Meanwhile, his career totals of double figure kill matches (86) and matches with 20-plus kills (64) rank second and first respectively on the all-time charts.
Hilliard is majoring in Political Science. He attended Dana Hills High School in Dana Point, Calif., and is the son of Bill and Mary Louise Hilliard of Dana Point.
The AVCA will formally present its National Player of the Year awards at the AVCA National Convention this December in Albuquerque, N.M. Hilliard will be honored along with the Player of the Year recipients for NCAA and NAIA women's volleyball in a special banquet ceremony.