Sports Volleyball

Q&A: Volleyball freshman talks adjusting to college


Freshman libero Katie Karbo says that volunteer work she has participated in has taught her to be more giving. | Courtesy of Stephen Pinchback

On a team filled with freshman, one of the breakout stars for the women’s volleyball squad is libero Katie Karbo.

Replacing departed senior Olivia O’Dell, Karbo has appeared in all 78 sets and leads the team with 346 digs and 22 service aces.

The Cougar caught up with Karbo to learn a little more about her.

The Cougar: What first got you into volleyball?

Katie Karbo: When I was nine, my cousins were older than me and they played club volleyball and had a sand volleyball course outside their house. Whenever I would go over there they’d play with me and teach me how to do stuff. At 11, I started to play on my first club team.

TC: What made you want to come to UH?

KK: When I was being recruited my sophomore year, I came and took a visit. Whenever I walked around campus and met the team and the coaches, I really fell in love with the whole atmosphere that was around and what they stood for and what UH stands for.

TC: What have you found is the biggest difference between high school and college?

KK: The schoolwork and volleyball; you don’t have time to do anything or any downtime. It’s really busy and classes are a lot harder. Other than that, not much.

TC: Do you feel any added pressure coming in to replace Olivia O’Dell, who had a record-setting year in 2015?

KK: For me, I want to beat that record. I don’t feel any pressure to do it. I just feel that I am capable of doing it eventually.

TC: How did playing in the Amateur Athletic Union and going to nationals prepare you for college volleyball?

KK: There’s a lot of big competition so whenever I played at TAV (Texas Advantage Volleyball Club), I went to nationals every year. We won my 17 (division) year so getting that experience and win under my belt made me realize that anything is possible — even in college — and we still have the capability to do anything. You just have to set your mind to it. So, going to nationals and AAU was a great experience because it taught me a lot about myself and how I am under pressure.

TC:  You say your father is your biggest influence. What are some of the lessons he has taught you?

KK: One of the biggest lessons is follow your heart. He’s always told me to follow my heart, and if I know that I can do something and if I believe it then I can do it.

TC: What did volunteering for Habitat for Humanity teach you about life?

KK: That I’m grateful for everything that I have in my life. That we only have one life and we should be giving and giving; realizing that not everybody has what we have. Especially as a student-athlete — we are really blessed to have that.

TC: On a lighter note, what’s your current Netflix go-to?

KK: Right now, it’s “How to Get Away with Murder.” It’s really interesting and you should watch it.

[email protected]

Leave a Comment