« Volleyball 2016

Taylor Whittingham

School

University of Southern California

Position
Libero
Major
Communication

Classroom

Taylor Whittingham is a two-time Pac-12 All-Academic Honorable Mention selection. A communication major, Whittingham holds one of the team’s top grade-point averages and has as 3.00 cumulative GPA in the highly competitive USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. She also will graduate with a minor in consumer behavior from the prestigious USC Marshall School of Business.

Character

Whittingham was elected USC’s team captain for the 2016 season. She came to the school as a walk-on and proved herself on the court where she fought off scholarship players to earn time in nearly every match as a freshman. She won the starting job as the libero as a sophomore and was only later granted a scholarship, but only for her junior season. Despite those odds, she showed her commitment to the program, the team, her coaches and the fans of our program by staying on for her senior season, one in which she will lead the team as its captain without a scholarship. Whittingham is kind, thoughtful, considerate and always makes time for people who need it. As a high school student, she organized fundraisers for the Autism Speaks campaign and was a champion for the cause, which is near and dear to her because her younger brother has autism. Whittingham is diplomatic, pragmatic, and fair in her decision-making and a favorite of USC fans and its coaching staff.

Community

As a member of the USC Athletic Department, Whittingham has performed community service projects at the Los Angeles Children’s Hospital, where she and teammates spent a day with patients doing various activities to brighten their days such as painting, drawing and playing games. She has served as a team leader and counselor for USC’s annual inner-city outreach program, A Day In Troy, through which she and other student-athletes use their position and status to influence young people to pursue education, college degrees and ultimately their career goals. She also has been an active counselor for the Girl Scouts program in 2014-2015. In the summer of 2016, Whittingham was chosen to the Pac-12 All-Star Team, an elite group of athletes that visited China for competition, touring and to put on free volleyball clinics. She served as an ambassador for the sport of volleyball, the University of Southern California, her team and her country.

Competition

Whittingham was a 2015 Volleyball Magazine All-America Third Team selection and received AVCA All-America Honorable Mention honors in 2014. She is a two-time AVCA All-Pacific South Region selection and has two Pac-12 All-Conference Honorable Mention honors under her belt. She has twice been named the Pac-12’s Defensive Player of the Week and was chosen to two different non-conference all-tournament teams. She is on pace to finish as high as USC’s third all-time career leader in digs and would be in elite company with All-Americans Debora Seilhamer and Natalie Hagglund. For all the accolades, Whittingham did it all as a walk-on to the program back in 2013. She proved herself on the court and earned the respect of her coaches and teammates to receive a one-year scholarship in 2015 and returned for her season as the Trojans’ elected captain.