Before the season began, Ball State women’s volleyball head coach Steve Shondell referred to senior Jacqui Seidel as the moral and emotional leader of the team.

It’s an easy argument to make, seeing as she’s competed in 91 matches throughout her Ball State career, seeing time in 10 as a freshman.

When Seidel entered Ball State, she sat behind Brittany McGinnis, who helped mentor her.

Career Stats
91 matches played
140 career kills
2,407 career assists
736 career digs
Career-high 62 assists against Central Michigan, Nov. 10, 2012

During Seidel’s sophomore season, she began slowly chipping away at McGinnis’ playing time until injury struck.

Late in the season, Seidel tore her ACL. She fought back and returned the next season, although Shondell said he thinks it wasn’t until the end of that season that she fully recovered and was able to play at the level she was at before the injury.

“I think I’m way more mentally tough than when I came in,” Seidel said. “Before college I wasn’t tested or challenged, but fighting for my position and through my injury, it made me the
toughest player I could ever become.”

After returning from the injury, she was the starting setter on the team. The position has allowed her to naturally assume a leadership position, she dictates where the offense
attacks from on nearly every point.

Over the 2013 season, Seidel has racked up 853 assists and is sixth highest in the Mid-American Conference with 9.37 assists per set. Those numbers have helped Ball State climb to the
top of the MAC West conference at 10-2.

“I think she’s a great athlete and a great person,” Shondell said before the season began. “We know every time she goes out on the court that we’ve got a great chance to win.”

Her reach extends beyond helping the Ball State team. Seidel coaches young girls at the Munciana Volleyball Club and has had her students attend Ball State matches to cheer her on, occasionally bringing posters that say “Go Jacqui” on them.

She called the experience rewarding, helping others learn the sport she loves.

But after her match win against Eastern Michigan University, she said her life wouldn’t be the same without the group of seniors she’s been playing with throughout her time at Ball

“Those girls are my best friends, all of them,” Seidel said. “I knew them in high school and we clicked from the beginning, I know we’ll be friends for life and that I can turn to them
for anything.”