The Big 12 has finished every season with at least three teams ranked in the final AVCA top 25 poll. All three squads advanced to the NCAA Regional Semifinals, the sixth straight year the league has sent a trio of teams to the Sweet Sixteen.
This is the sixth consecutive season the Longhorns have finished in the top 10. They have closed out three of the past four seasons with a top five ranking. Texas ended its season at 25-5, making its sixth-straight Regional Finals appearance.
UT earned the 2011 Big 12 title after going 15-1 in conference contests. It marked the Longhorns' fifth conference crown after earning the title in 1997 and from 2007-09. It was also the third time UT has won the championship outright (‘97 and ‘09). Texas has finished as the league runner-up on five occasions. UT closed out 2011 with the longest active home winning streak, having won 30-straight contests in Austin.
Iowa State's ranking comes on the heels of an NCAA regional final berth by the 25-6 Cyclones, who finished second in the Big 12 with a 13-3 conference record. It is the second-highest final ranking in school history.
The 2011 season was one of the best ever for Iowa State as the Cyclones defeated a record-tying five ranked opponents, including an upset of No. 9 Florida, and won 25 matches for only the second time in program history. Seventh-year head coach Christy Johnson-Lynch made history as the winningest volleyball coach at Iowa State, finishing the season with a career record of 150-70.
The Wildcats are ranked in the final poll for the first time since 2008 and 11th time since 1996. K-State (22-11) fell to Pepperdine in the Regional Semifinals, ending a successful season after being selected to finish eighth in the Big 12 Conference in the preseason.
KSU knocked of No. 2 national seed Nebraska in Lincoln to advance, handing Nebraska its first postseason home loss since 2002 and only its third ever with a 3-2 upset in the NCAA second round. NU had advanced to an NCAA Regional in each of the last 17 seasons, the longest active streak in the nation. NU was also ranked No. 2 nationally, marking the highest ranked team the Wildcats have ever defeated.