Today we’ve got another one of Purdue’s talented freshman class and just to even things out we’re going to talk about Purdue’s most stacked position: Outside Hitter. Ariel Turner is obviously All-Everything and we have a deep rotation with Katie Griffen, Cat Rebarchak, and Valerie Nichol. The newest member to this already loaded position is today's volleyball player, Annie Drews.
Hometown: Elkhart, In. (Penn HS)
2012 Projection: Redshirt
Because of all this depth, I will be slightly surprised if Annie Drews isn’t redshirted, however it’s not impossible. Coach Shondell was very complimentary about Drews’ offensive ability in his interview with Juan and if Rebarchak falls out of favor early, it’s quite possible that Annie steps up and takes that spot in the rotation.
Annie is a fairly local player, coming from Elkhart, IN. Not to talk up Coach Shondell too much, but according to John Tawas of PrepVolleyball.com, Coach recruited Annie early and by the time the rest of the country was interested we had already gotten a commit. A quick list of her awards: first team AVCA/Under Armour High School All-American for 2011-12, ranked No. 29 on PrepVolleyball.com's list of Senior Aces, a Gatorade Player of the Year nominee after picking up first team all-state and first team All-Northern Indiana Conference honors as a senior, led Penn to the 4A state title as a junior and senior after transfering from Elkhart Central, et al. She’s talented, guys.
A 6’4" left hander who loves to hit, Drews is going to be a great player for Purdue at some point. If she’s as good as the rankings say then she may well be starting by next year. And if Coach Shondell’s assessment of her striking abilities translates to higher level competition then don’t be shocked if she’s a contributor this season.