December 15, 2006
Jeanne Hess started the meeting with an update on the discussions from the Division III Head Coaches Committee Meeting held on December 13. Poll issues and poll philosophy were a primary topic of discussion. Educating poll voters on teams from around the country and having better communication among poll voters are keys in developing a good poll. Some possible solutions for these issues include conducting a preseason and mid-season conference call for poll voters, educating the poll voters during the preseason on voting philosophies, providing Internet links to sites such as the NCAA regional ratings to assist with compiling information, and providing clickable e-mail links to all poll voters to enhance communication.
All coaches were encouraged to be proactive in recruiting members to join the AVCA. Whenever turnover occurs and a new coach enters a conference that is an excellent opportunity to speak with that coach about joining the association.
The AVCA Web site will be redesigned in 2007 to provide more resources and better communication for members. Coaches should watch for more details coming later in the year.
The AVCA needs articles for Coaching Volleyball magazine. Coaches interested in submitting an article for publication should contact Rick Capone, Coaching Volleyball editor, at email@example.com. The articles could include a Q&A section with a coach, a day in the life section and educational articles on various topics.
II. NCAA Rules and Survey Results
Heather Perry addressed the group on NCAA rules. Playing rules are the same in all 3 divisions and rule changes can only occur with a 2/3 majority vote. A rules change proposal form was distributed to the attendees. The form should be submitted to Heather Perry for consideration by the NCAA Women's Volleyball Rules Committee. Once the committee passes a rule, it goes to the Playing Rules Oversight Panel for consideration.
Marcia Alterman discussed the survey that was distributed to coaches in the fall. As of December 15, 42% of DIII coaches had responded. The survey will be resent in a couple of weeks to increase participation. The survey includes areas such as warm-up protocol, poll placement and 25 vs. 30-point games. Results will be posted on the AVCA Web site.
III. AVCA Executive Director
AVCA Executive Director Kathy DeBoer discussed how volleyball has become a national game which was proven by the geographic diversity of the teams competing in the DI, DII, DIII and NAIA championship tournaments.
In addition, Kathy encouraged coaches to be more proactive in the marketing of their teams and the sport. This type of involvement is critical in helping the sport grow.
IV. NCAA Championships
Chad Schreiber discussed the activities of the NCAA Championships Committee. The DIII championships will be held in Bloomington, Illinois for the next two years. Bids for 2009 and 2010 are still open. Anyone interested in bidding to host the event must have the bid submitted by February 1, 2007 to be considered. The NCAA often receives bids that are incomplete so it is important to provide all of the information that is requested. Keanah Smith distributed a bid packet as an example of what a complete bid should look like and the detailed information required for the committee to make a decision.
Chad discussed the criteria used in selecting teams for the DIII tournament. This criteria includes a team's opponent's average winning percentage and the team's opponent's - opponent's average winning percentage.
Keanah reported that the NCAA has developed a new logo for volleyball that is now available.
The NCAA is currently gathering data from a survey of members on regional realignment. This issue will be addressed again in February. Realignment would not happen until 2009 if approved in 2007.
The DIII tournament will be expanded as DIII expands but will include a maximum of 64 teams.
When assigning teams to regionals the committee must follow the 500-mile rule. This rule requires that teams be sent to a regional within 500 miles of their location.
The NCAA Championship Committee is working with the AVCA on ways to increase attendance at the championships. A coaching workshop was held in Salem, Virginia this year and a similar concept may be developed for Bloomington in 2007. Coaches are encouraged to submit any ideas for increasing attendance to the committee. Clinics may also be held at regional sites to increase attendance at those locations as well.
V. AVCA Awards Committee
Danny Miller, chair of the All-American Committee, addressed some of the challenges faced by the committee when making selections. Danny stated that making All-American selections prior to the banquet at the quarterfinals is almost impossible due to the timing. The committee selects 36 athletes (3 teams of 12) as All-Americans and the selection process occurs while play is still taking place. Many of the athletes chosen as All-Americans (particularly non-participants in the quarterfinals) do not attend the banquet which raises the question as to whether the selection process should be rushed so the athletes can attend the banquet if most don't attend anyway. The committee needs more time to make informed selections.
The DIII Head Coaches Committee will look at this issue to get a consensus on what can be done to improve the situation. One solution could be to recognize All-Americans for all divisions at the AVCA Annual Convention. Coaches were encouraged to send any opinions or ideas to Danny Miller, Jeanne Hess or Kelly Stumph, AVCA's manager of awards.
VI. Closing Remarks
Jeanne Hess thanked everyone for attending and invited all DIII coaches to participate in the DIII Head Coaches Committee meeting scheduled for 11:30 a.m. on December 15. Jeanne encouraged DIII coaches to attend as a follow-up to the General Meeting for further discussion and a problem solving session on the All-American selection issues and brainstorm ideas for growing volleyball at the DIII level.
The meeting was adjourned at 10:30 a.m. CT.