Despite the departure of Denise Griffin and Tara Birkinbine who filled 100 percent of the time at the position in 2002, libero concerns OU head coach Kalani Mahi the least. With the return of senior Yvette Villanueva, the addition of junior transfer Stephanie Tengram and a plethora of hitters and newcomers itching for time, the defensive role will not only be filled but will be competitive
With a year of experience in the Oklahoma system, Villanueva is the favorite for the starting role as training camp closes.
"Yvette has been making a good transition and she will be one of the people who will be looked upon to fill that spot," said Mahi.
Tengram has impressive credentials from her Division II days with Pittsburg State, where she averaged 3.57 digs per game. She'll also be expected to bring a calming leadership to the locker room.
Beyond Tengram and Villanueva, everyone who isn't a middle hitter, setter or named Christina Maynes or Keri Coats may end up in the defensive back row rotation.