July 30, 2020, 1:12 p.m. (ET)
-Matches to take place at Municipal Auditorium, February 26-April 4, 2021-
-League Sanctioned by USA Volleyball will be the only Pro Indoor Women’s Volleyball League in the United States-
-U.S. National Team Members Jordan Larson and Karsta Lowe Among Others Confirmed Players to Participate-
-Alliance Volleyball Club located in Franklin, TN, to Serve as Athletes Unlimited Training Facility Partner-
July 30, 2020, New York, NY – Athletes Unlimited has reached an agreement with the city of Nashville, TN, to host the only women’s pro indoor volleyball league in the United States at Nashville Municipal Auditorium from Feb. 26 – April 4, 2021 it was announced today.
Athletes Unlimited Volleyball is officially sanctioned by USA Volleyball and will feature 40 of the world’s best players including members of the U.S. National Team, accomplished professional players and recent NCAA graduates during its 30-game season. In addition to Jordan Larson (Two-Time Olympic Medalist, University of Nebraska ) and Karsta Lowe (Olympic Medalist, UCLA), confirmed players already include Sherridan Atkinson (International Star, Purdue University), Katie Carter (International Star, UCLA ), Tiffany Clark (All-American Honorable Mention,Wisconsin), Taylor Cook (International Star, U of Colorado), Aury Cruz (Named Best Server at Olympic Qualifications Tournament, University of Florida), Nia Grant (International Star, Penn State), Sareea Freeman (3x ACC Champion, Florida State), Erin Fairs (2015 ACC Champion, Louisville), Erica Handley (2020 Czech Republic Cup Winner, Minnesota), Kristen Tupac-Hahn (International Star, Iowa State), Cursty Le Roux (2015 Pan American Games Gold Medalist with Team USA, University of Arizona), Cassidy Lichtman (Two-Time Pan American Gold Medalist with Team USA, Stanford ), Molly Lohman (2016 Global Challenge MVP, University of Minnesota), Valerie Nichol (German Super Cup Winner, Purdue University), Deja McClendon (Unanimous All Big Ten, Penn State), Molly McCage (All-American, University of Texas), Samantha Middleborn (International Star, Cal State), Amanda Peterson (Sports Impact Classic MVP, Ohio State) and Paige Tapp (Two-time Pan Am Games Gold Medalist with Team USA, University of Minnesota).
Alliance Volleyball Club will serve as the official training facility partner for Athletes Unlimited players during the season in its 12 court, 68,000 square foot location at TOA Sports Performance Center in Franklin, Tennessee. It will also serve as the official youth training partner for clinics and activities.
“Having the opportunity to play with some of the greatest players in the world here in the U.S. is an amazing way to help us grow our sport,” said Jordan Larson, Athletes Unlimited player, Player Executive Committee and Advisory Board Member.
“We are thrilled to be partnering with the City of Nashville to host the only indoor women’s pro volleyball league in the United States,” said Jon Patricof, Co-Founder and CEO. “After evaluating a number of possible host cities, Nashville stood out as the best possible home for Athletes Unlimited Volleyball.”
“Hosting Athletes Unlimited Volleyball is just another sign that Nashville is ready and able to host sporting events of all kinds and underscores why we were named Best Sports City in 2019,” said Butch Spyridon, President and CEO, Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp. “We look forward to supporting women’s professional sports and giving local and visiting fans a unique sporting event to attend. We know the national and international attention will be great marketing for the city.”
Athletes Unlimited leagues will feature a range of innovations to bring athletes and fans a unique and intense version of the sport. Individual athletes earn points based on team wins and individual performance and become the champions in team sports. Points can be earned on every play and the leaderboard changes constantly. Teams will change each week, with the top four athletes in the standings serving as captains and drafting their teams. Athletes Unlimited’s inaugural softball league featuring 56 of the best athletes in the world will begin play at Parkway Bank Sports Complex in Rosemont, Il from August 30 – September 29.
In addition to an innovative new approach to sports, Athletes Unlimited will also offer professional development resources to help players expand their career opportunities, as well as engage a number of non-profit partners.
Athletes Unlimited was co-founded by Jon Patricof and Jonathan Soros and is supported by its Advisory Board comprised of high-profile contributors from sports, business and entertainment. Members include U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team icon Abby Wambach; two-time NBA champion and entrepreneur Kevin Durant; Grand Slam champion and former world number one tennis star Caroline Wozniacki; ESPN broadcaster and four-time first-team All-American softball standout Jessica Mendoza; two-time Olympic medalist and captain of the USA Women’s National Volleyball team Jordan Larson; Thirty Five Ventures co-founder Rich Kleiman; USA Volleyball Women’s National Team head coach Karch Kiraly; International Olympic Committee member and four-time hockey Olympian Angela Ruggiero; Bleacher Report journalist Taylor Rooks and former player and past President of the United States Tennis Association Katrina Adams. The Athletes Unlimited Advisory Board will offer strategic advice and help the organization maintain best practices as the property grows.
For more information about Athletes Unlimited, our volleyball or softball leagues and additional announcements, please sign up at www.auprosports.com or follow us @auprosports on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.