Lantern file photo
Recently awarded with his fourth Midwest Intercollegiate Volleyball Association Defensive Player of the Week, senior middle blocker Grayson Overman has found himself leading a young team.
It’s a role he is unfamiliar with despite being a four-year starter.
“It’s been a little different because it’s a transition from me stepping up to older guys’ level to having to teach the younger guys,” Overman said.
Being one of the only remaining starters from the 2011 national championship team, Overman’s experience may prove invaluable to a team attempting to reach the same heights.
Redshirt senior middle blocker John Tholen said Overman has matured into a leader on the court and appreciates everything that he brings to the youngsters on the squad.
“Grayson, especially as a four-year starter, has the on-court experience,” Tholen said. “It helps to have someone out there who’s been there before and been in the big games, especially that national championship season.”
Overman has also excelled in the classroom as he has been named to the MIVA Academic All-Conference in all three of his seasons at OSU, and has been Academic All-Big Ten the past two years.
Overman gives some of the credit of his success to his teammates.
“It’s honestly pretty hard, but we all push each other,” Overman said. “We just want to reach the next level as student-athletes by focusing on both (sides) equally.”
Coach Pete Hanson recognizes Overman’s improvement over the years and appreciates his growth as a leader on and off the court.
“I think it’s kind of a new territory for him, but I think he’s embracing that,” Hanson says. “I think he’s taking strides in that, and it’s getting better day by day.”
Overman said he understands that everything the Buckeyes will accomplish this year is a group effort.
“It’s honestly a team effort,” Overman said. “It’s so fun being with these guys, it’s a reflection of how we work so well together.”
Having been there before, Overman sees the capabilities for this team, which stands with a 3-2 record, to make a run to the national championship.
“It’s such a good effort right now that I think we have the chemistry and what it takes to get the whole way,” Overman said.
The Buckeyes will be led by Overman as they travel this weekend to St. Charles, Mo., to take on Lindenwood. The team tips off Saturday at 8 p.m. and again Sunday at 3 p.m.