Meet Andrea Campos, Villanova volleyball player and daughter of Mexican soccer legend Jorge Campos

Some parents pass their eye color on to their children. Kids inherit facial features, habits, even ways to think about the world.

From her father, Villanova volleyball setter Andrea Campos inherited a love for throwing herself all over the court.

“One of my favorite parts of being a setter is making these crazy pursuit plays,” Campos said. “In high school, I would dive over benches and have to make these crazy plays. It’s just so much fun to do all that.”

Campos, a junior on the volleyball team, had major sporting shoes to fill. Her father, Jorge, played goalkeeper for Mexico’s national team from 1991 to 2003. While the elder Campos was perhaps best known for the multicolored, neon kits he designed and wore in games, he finished third for the best goalkeeper award by the International Federation of Football History & Statistics in 1993.

Standing just 5-foot-6, Jorge Campos relied on his agility to make the saves expected of taller, more traditional goalkeepers. His daughter, a taller 5-foot-8, faces similar challenges in a tall person’s sport.

“[I became a setter] probably because of my height, but also, in general, I was one of the more well-rounded athletes just because I was small,” Campos said. “I had to be able to do everything.”

Growing up, the first sport Campos played was soccer. The oldest of three siblings, she was expected to follow her father into the sport, and she showed potential playing both as a defender and a goalie. She tried volleyball in fifth grade and quickly joined a club team as well, then reached a point when she could not pursue both sports.

“Volleyball was something new and exciting,” Campos said, adding that she felt a little burned out by soccer. “So I just switched over to that competitively, and I’ve been playing volleyball ever since.”

That doesn’t mean she left soccer behind. Campos still loves the game and watched as much of the World Cup as she could. She has grown up supporting Mexico, but at the same time, she has lived in Los Angeles since she was 4 years old. Adding to her options, her mother is Canadian, and she was born in Alberta.

“I was really rooting for Mexico,” Campos said, although she celebrated Canada’s first World Cup goal and supported the US in the knockout rounds. “… I brought my Mexican Jersey out and was wearing it, trying to rep it, and then I was trying to watch [the third game] during practice. I put my laptop [next to the court] and during water breaks I’d quickly see the score.”

While her volleyball team had a disappointing season this year, finishing 10-20, Campos was a bright spot. Because of her height, Villanova coach Josh Steinbach occasionally plays a taller setter in Campos’ place, but when she plays, she has made a difference. Campos led the team with 551 assists this year, including a career-high 54 in a Big East win over Providence.

“She’s a feisty competitor,” Steinbach said. “She’s playing a big person’s game and she’s not very big, but she’s incredibly quick and athletic and does a good job for us.”

Going into her senior year, Campos is expected to play a big role for Villanova. She spent last spring recovering from surgery on her little finger, but this year, she’ll have a full offseason to continue developing.

As she improves, it becomes harder to keep her out of the lineup.

“The good thing for ‘Drea is she’s getting better and better as a setter, which makes us want to play her more, [but] the hard part is she’s not going to grow,” Steinbach said.

Some parents pass physical traits onto their children. Campos got her stature from her father.

However, making most of that height runs in the Campos family, too.

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