Northern Colorado Volleyball Alumnus Returns as UTRGV Girls’ Basketball Player

The UNC game was certainly special for the current Bears who entered the field for their first game under the direction of the new coaching staff, but it was also special for a former one.

Graduate student Taylor Muff returned to Greeley, but this time she was wearing a different colored jersey. She finished with eight points and led the UTRGV with nine rebounds on her return home.

“It was so cool. I was thinking this morning about how many places the sport has taken me, how many people it has given me, how wonderful others are, ”Muff said. “I am so lucky with the relationships I have made through sport here at UNC and UTRGV.”

A number of UNC volleyball players were in the stands to cheer on their teammate, including graduate student Daisy Schultz, senior Kailey Jo Ince, sophomore Syd Cole and rookie Annette Baker. Northern Colorado head coach Lyndsey Oates also made a supporting appearance.

  • GREELEY, CO – APRIL 02: Northern Colorado outside hitter Taylor Muff (5), northern Colorado passer Daisy Schultz (7) and northern Colorado outside hitter Rachel Hickman (11) smile for a photo after playing announced as part of the overall team tournament in the Northern Colorado Bears Conference Championship volleyball game against the Weber State Wildcats during the Big Sky Tournament at Bank of Colorado Arena at the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley, April 2, 2021. The Bears fell to the Wildcats 3-1. (Alex McIntyre / staff photographer)

  • GREELEY, CO – APRIL 02: Northern Colorado defensive specialist Kyndall Feather (4) and Northern Colorado outside hitter Taylor Muff (5) prepare to dig in the Championship volleyball game of the Northern Colorado Bears conference against the Weber State Wildcats at the Big Sky tournament at Colorado Bank Arena at the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley on April 2, 2021. The Bears and Wildcats are tied 1-1 after the first two sets. (Alex McIntyre / staff photographer)

  • GREELEY, CO – APRIL 02: Northern Colorado outside hitter Taylor Muff (5) attacks as Weber State center blocker Caroline Broadhead (10) defends in the Northern Colorado Bears Conference Championship volleyball game against the Weber State Wildcats at the Big Sky tournament at Bank of Colorado Arena at the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley on April 2, 2021. The Bears and Wildcats are tied 1-1 after the first two sets. (Alex McIntyre / staff photographer)

  • GREELEY, CO – APRIL 01: Northern Colorado outside batter Taylor Muff (5) digs during the Northern Colorado Bears volleyball game against the Southern Utah Thunderbirds in the Big Sky Volleyball Tournament semi-final at Bank of Colorado Arena at the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley on April 1, 2021. The Bears defeated the Thunderbirds in straight sets and advance to the Conference Championship game against the Weber State Wildcats on Friday. (Alex McIntyre / staff photographer)

  • GREELEY, CO – APRIL 01: North Colorado outside hitter Taylor Muff (5) attacks while South Utah center tackle McKenzie Dowell (2) and South Utah outside hitter Stacey Hone (10 ) try to block during the Northern Colorado Bears volleyball game against the Southern Utah Thunderbirds in the semi-finals of the Big Sky Volleyball tournament at the Bank of Colorado Arena at the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley on the 1st April 2021. The Bears beat the Thunderbirds in straight sets to advance to the Conference Championship game against Weber State Wildcats on Friday. (Alex McIntyre / staff photographer)

  • GREELEY, CO – NOVEMBER 16: Northern Colorado guard Jaiden Galloway (4) walks past Texas Rio Grande Valley forward Taylor Muff (5) in the Colorado Bears home opener against the Texas Rio Grande Valley Vaqueros at Bank of Colorado Arena at the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley on Nov. 16, 2021. The Bears lead the Vaqueros 31-23 at halftime. (Alex McIntyre / staff photographer)

The former Big Sky All-Conference first-team member knew a few people were coming, but was shocked to see how many more were in the stands.

“It means a world. I went out earlier and started to cry; they are all waiting to say hello, ”she said. “I have a friend who wrote ‘Muff’ on her forehead. Having these relationships is unlike anything you can experience.

Muff is one of the most prolific players in the northern Colorado volleyball program. She is in the top 10 for kills, digs, kills and aces serving in the Division I era of UNC.

The Kansas native held the record aces in service until this season, when current seniors Laura Katarzynski and Kyndall Feather topped her 114 aces.

In addition, Muff is one of nine players in the history of the program to have recorded at least 1000 eliminations and 1000 recoveries. This is in addition to his season and match records.

The NCAA has granted athletes an additional year of eligibility due to COVID-19. Muff chose to leave UNC to play for Lane Lord at UTRGV. Lord is a family friend and the club’s basketball coach. She is pursuing a master’s degree at the institution.

Although she wears orange while playing Bank of Colorado Arena for a different sport than the one Bears fans know her for, it was great to come back.

“UNC has given me so much. My experience here was amazing. I couldn’t have asked for better than four years, ”Muff said. “The people that I have met, like I just said, I really love, I am Greeley until I die. I love Colorado and everything related to it.


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