Former Minnesota outside hitter Jenna Wenaas is transferring to Texas

Katie Borchetta, General Sports Reporter

Junior outside hitter Jenna Wenaas announced her transfer from Minnesota to Texas on Dec. 23 via Instagram. She will join the reigning NCAA volleyball champions for the 2023 season. Ironically, Wenaas’ Minnesota career ended in Gregory Gym when her team fell to three-seed Ohio State in a 3-1 matchup on Dec. 8.

Wenaas played at Minnesota for the first three years of her collegiate career, racking up a number of awards and honors, such as All-Big Ten Second Team in 2021 and NCAA All-Region Team in 2022. In the previous season, Wenaas ranked third on the team in kills, averaging 2.40 per set. She also averaged 2.37 digs per set.

After the Gophers’ loss in Austin, Wenaas expressed that her time at Minnesota is something she will remember fondly. 

“Minnesota will always have a piece of my heart,” Wenaas said in an Instagram post on Dec. 18. 

Five days later, Wenaas posted a photo of herself in a Texas shirt as she held the “hook ‘em” gesture.

“I’m coming home,” the caption said, followed by six exclamation points. Wenaas is originally from Frisco, a Dallas-area suburb. 

The outside hitter will be one of multiple new players on the Texas roster. She has big shoes to fill with the departure of fifth-year outside hitter and three-time First Team All American Logan Eggleston.

Minnesota head coach Hugh McCutcheon described his excitement in Wenaas’ volleyball performance, but it is what he anticipated. 

“She’s a very good volleyball player and it’s just great to see her out there competing and doing the things we know she’s capable of doing,” McCutcheon said in a feature story on Wenaas in the Minnesota Daily. 

While Wenaas is transferring to a new team, she’s familiar with Texas head coach Jerritt Elliott. Back in 2019, Wenaas was one of 12 players scouted to try out for the U.S. Junior Women’s National team, which she made. Elliott was a part of that coaching staff. 

“I’m proud of all the girls who came in and gave us great energy,” Elliott said about the team in a Texas Sports article. “Our staff has really enjoyed this talented group’s personalities.”

Not only has she had experience with Elliott and his coaching, but the team also featured Eggleston and junior opposite hitter Molly Phillips. 

“Can’t wait,” Phillips said in a comment on Wenaas’ Instagram.