2007 AVCA Division I Region Coaches of the Year
2007 AVCA Division I Region Coaches of the Year Announced
LEXINGTON, Ky. - The following coaches have been selected by their region as the 2007 AVCA Division I Region Coach of the Year. Each of the honorees will represent their region on the 2007 AVCA National Coach of the Year ballot. The awards will be officially presented at the 2007 Jostens Coaches Honors Luncheon in Sacramento, Calif., on Thursday, Dec. 13, at the 2007 American Volleyball Coaches Association Annual Convention.
AVCA Division I Central Region Coach of the Year
Jerritt Elliott, University of Texas
2007 Record: 26-3, 19-1 Big 12 Conference
Jerritt Elliott had another successful season at the University of Texas (Austin, Texas), leading his team to a 24-3 overall regular season record, a 19-1 Big 12 record, and a tie for first place in the conference with Nebraska. In the process, the Longhorns also handed the Cornhuskers its only defeat during the 2007 regular season. For the third-ranked Longhorns, this season's share of the Big 12 title was its first since 1997. In seven years at Texas, Elliott has led the Longhorns into the NCAA Tournament six times, including the NCAA Regionals this week where the Longhorns will face seventh-ranked Florida. This is the third time Elliott has been named AVCA Regional Coach of the Year, as he earned the honors in 2004 in the Central Region and in 2000 in the Pacific Region while coaching Southern California.
AVCA Division I East Region Coach of the Year
Jolene Jordan-Hoover, Clemson University
2007 Record: 35-3, 21-1 Atlantic Coast Conference
In her 15th season as head coach of Clemson University (Clemson, S.C.), Jolene Jordan-Hoover has led her Tigers' team to a 29-4 record and its first trip to the NCAA Tournament since 1999 and sixth time overall. After beginning the season with a 4-2 record, Clemson would lose just twice for the duration of the season to secure the 2nd-highest winning percentage in school history (.879). The 2007 Atlantic Coast Conference champions went 21-1 during the conference season to earn the ACC's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. The Tigers were ranked on the CSTV/AVCA Division I Coaches Top 25 Poll four of the last five weeks of the season, reaching as high as No. 20. Jordan-Hoover, already the winningest coach in Clemson volleyball history, is now 314-175 as Tigers' head coach and is only one of three ACC coaches to reach 100 ACC victories. This is the first time that Jordan-Hoover has won the AVCA Division I East Region Coach of the Year award. She was also named the 1999 Tachikara/AVCA District 3 Coach of the Year.
AVCA Division I Mideast Region Coach of the Year
Russ Rose, Penn State University
2007 Record: 30-2, 20-0 Big Ten Conference
Russ Rose has enjoyed a very successful 29th season at the helm of the Penn State University (University Park, Pa.) women's volleyball team. He has led the No. 1 Nittany Lions to a 28-2 overall regular season record and an undefeated 20-0 conference record, capturing its fifth consecutive and 11th overall Big Ten Championship. Named the 2007 Big Ten Coach of the Year for the ninth time, Rose also has taken Penn State, one of only two teams to make all 27 NCAA Tournaments, to the 2007 NCAA Regionals. The Nittany Lions will host this weekend's event and they will face off with Big Ten rival Michigan.
AVCA Division I Midwest Region Coach of the Year
Liz Kritza, Tulane University
2007 Record: 28-6, 14-2 Conference-USA
In her just her third season as head coach, Liz Kritza has led Tulane University (New Orleans, La.) to a 28-6 overall record and a second-place Conference-USA finish with a record of 14-2, a marked improvement from the squad's 15-11 overall and 11-5 conference marks in 2006. The Green Wave began the season rattling off seven straight victories, and after experiencing a few bumps midway through the campaign, finished the year by winning 11 of its last 12 games. Under the Kritza's guidance, the Green Wave capped off a perfect home season (12-0) for the first time in school history, while reaching the 28-win plateau for only the fifth time in program history. This first time that Kritza has won the AVCA Division I Midwest Region Coach of the Year award.
AVCA Division I Northeast Region Coach of the Year
Tim Horsmon, University of Dayton
2007 Record: 33-2, 12-1 Atlantic 10 Conference
Tim Horsmon led the University of Dayton (Dayton, Ohio) to its best season in the history of the program in 2007. In just his fifth year at the helm of the Flyers, he guided Dayton to a 33-2 overall record and its fourth Atlantic 10 Conference title in five years with a 12-1 record. Dayton, which was nationally ranked for the first time in school history and reached a high of No. 12 on the CSTV/AVCA Coaches Top 25 Poll on October 8, went on to reach the second round of the NCAA Tournament, the fourth time under his tenure the team reached the national tournament. Sporting a 128-43 record since arriving at Dayton, Horsmon has earned his first AVCA Mideast Region Coach of the Year award.
AVCA Division I Pacific Region Coach of the Year
Debby Colberg, Sacramento State
2007 Record: 29-8, 13-3 Big Sky Conference
Debby Colberg announced that she would retire at the end of the 2007 season, and then went out and made her final season one to remember. Closing out her 32 year career, Colberg led Sacramento State (Sacramento, Calif.) to a 29-8 overall record, a 13-3 conference record, and a sixth consecutive Big Sky Conference Tournament title. In the process, she earned her eighth Big Sky Conference Coach of the Year award and led Sacramento State to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. She closes out her career with an 828-292 record (the fourth most wins among active coaches), two national titles, 20 NCAA Tournament appearances, and 18 conference championships. Colberg will be inducted into the AVCA Hall of Fame Thursday, December 13 in Sacramento.
AVCA Division I South Region Coach of the Year
Matt Peck, Middle Tennessee
2007 Record: 35-2, 16-1 Sun Belt Conference
Matt Peck's fourth season as the head coach of Middle Tennessee State University (Murfreesboro, Tenn.) has been one of his most successful to date. The Blue Raiders opened the 2007 campaign with 10 victories and have since seen only two losses, while riding a current 14-game win streak. Under Peck's guidance, Middle Tennessee has turned in one of the nation's best records this season at 35-2, and the Blue Raiders captured their second-consecutive Sun Belt Conference Championship with a final conference mark of 16-1, earning the team its third-ever trip to the NCAA Tournament. The Blue Raiders capitalized on this opportunity, knocking off nationally ranked Louisville and Hawai'i in successive days to secure their first trip to the NCAA Regionals in school history. After handing Hawai'i its first-ever NCAA second-round loss, Peck's MTSU squad was awarded with a No. 16 ranking in the CSTV/AVCA Division I Coaches Top 25 Poll, the highest-ever rating for the Blue Raiders. This is Peck's first AVCA Division I South Region Coach of the Year honor. He was an AVCA Division II National Coach of the Year and three-time AVCA Division II Region Coach of the Year Recipient while the head coach at North Alabama.
AVCA Division I West Region Coach of the Year
Allison Keeley, UNLV
2007 Record: 24-6, 12-4 Mountain West Conference
The 2007 season has been as year of firsts for fourth-year UNLV (Las Vegas, Nev.) head coach Allison Keeley and her Rebels squad. Under Keeley's direction, UNLV turned in its most successful campaign in the program's history, finishing the season with a 24-6 overall record, it's first-ever Mountain West Conference Tournament Championship and earning a trip to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history. After ending 2006 with a 20-10 record, Keeley guided the Rebels to the program's first-ever appearance in the CSTV/AVCA Division I Coaches Top 25 Poll, where it stood at No. 25 for two consecutive weeks. In addition, UNLV achieved only its fourth-ever 20-win campaign, with two of those four seasons coming under the mentorship of Keeley. This first time that Keeley has won the AVCA Division I West Region Coach of the Year award.