Volleyball Signs Two for 2016 Season

Hometown: DeSoto, Texas
High School: DeSoto High School
Position: Outside Hitter
Height: 6’1″

High School: Oak Park-River Forest HS
Hometown: Chicago, Ill.
Position: Defensive Specialist
Height: 5’5″

LAWRENCE, Kan. – Kansas volleyball head coach Ray Bechard took the next step in maintaining an unprecedented level of success by announcing the addition of high school seniors Jada Burse (DeSoto, Texas) and Allie Nelson (Chicago, Ill.) for the 2016-17 academic year on Thursday during the early signing period.

Burse, a 6-foot-1 outside hitter, is touted by Coach Bechard as having Big 12-ready skills and is primed to fill the role of departing four-year starter and fellow Texan, Tiana Dockery, after this season.

“With Tiana graduating, the acquisition of Jada Burse is big for us,” Bechard said. “She’s a young lady who is very athletic, played at a high level in club competition, can play on either pin – left-side or right-side, has a great presence. Our fans are going to love her. She has a chance to come in and really make a seamless transition to our team. We are thrilled about that. High-level attacker, but she also has a physicality too. I think she is a Big 12-level blocker right now.”

As a junior last season, Burse earned Texas Class 6A All-State honorable mention honors and District 8-6A All-Academic First Team. Burse competed for Texas Advantage Volleyball Club – the same club that produced current Jayhawk Ainise Havili and former Jayhawk Erin McNorton.

Nelson comes to Lawrence as a defensive specialist, but also brings a versatile skillset to the floor. As a freshman at Oak Park-River Forest High School, Nelson was the starting outside hitter for the Huskies. She moved to starting libero during her sophomore year, helping Oak Park-River Forest to a 30-win season and a sectional championship.

“Allie will be a libero candidate for us with Cassie Wait having one year left after this season,” Bechard said. “She is going to get a great learning opportunity under Cassie and our other returning defensive specialists. She has great quickness, good platform skills, is an enthusiastic competitor, so she’ll add a great on-court presence to our team, and somebody that will come in and help our team immediately from a pass-and-serve standpoint.”

Nelson competed club volleyball with Michio Chicago Volleyball Academy.

No. 10 Kansas (22-2, 10-2 Big 12) has four matches remaining in the regular-season schedule, starting with TCU on Saturday at 1 p.m. in Lawrence.

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Welcome to the #kuvball family, Jada! https://t.co/Jm2ntzPx3P pic.twitter.com/0MkdiejAss

— Kansas Volleyball (@KUVolleyball) November 13, 2015

Welcome to the #kuvball family, Allie! https://t.co/Jm2ntzPx3P pic.twitter.com/XYUTPxGCKs

— Kansas Volleyball (@KUVolleyball) November 13, 2015

Introducing our two newest Jayhawks — Allie Nelson and Jada Burse! #kuvball

A photo posted by Kansas Volleyball (@kuvolleyball) on Nov 12, 2015 at 4:33pm PST