DI Head Coach of the Year - Russ Rose, Penn State University
DI Assistant Coach of the Year - Salima Rockwell, University of Texas
LEXINGTON, Ky. (December 19, 2013) - The American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) is proud to announce that Penn State University Head Women’s Volleyball Coach Russ Rose has been selected as the 2013 AVCA Division I Coach of the Year, while the University of Texas Associate Head Coach Salima Rockwell has been named the 2013 AVCA Division I Assistant Coach of the Year.
The 35th year head coach of the Nittany Lions has once again proved in 2013 why he is one of the best to ever coach the game. Never having a season with fewer than 22 victories, Rose is just the third active coach in Division I to record 1,000 career wins. He currently sits at No. 2 all time with 1,123. This year marked Penn State’s 33rd consecutive appearance in the NCAA Tournament, and will play the University of Washington in the semifinals later today.
Penn State had high expectations in 2013 and have not disappointed. Rose collected his 16th Big Ten Championship and 14th Big Ten Coach of the Year honor leading his squad to a 32-2 overall and 19-1 conference record. They enter the final four one of the hottest teams in the nation, winners of 23 consecutive matches. They boast five players on the AVCA All-Northeast Region team in Nila Grant, Micha Hancock, Deja McClendon, Ariel Scott and Katie Slay, with Rose earning AVCA Region Coach of the Year.
It wasn’t just the fact they won in what many consider one of the most difficult conferences in the country, it was how they won it. In their 19 Big Ten victories (57 sets won), they dropped just a total of 11 sets.
As a team, Penn State leads the nation with 3.10 blocks per set and is third in team hitting percentage (.314) and win percentage (93.8%). The current No. 2 ranked Nittany Lions have been ranked as high as No. 1 on three separate occasions , but have never dropped out of the top-5.
Rose is now a five-time AVCA National Coach of the Year after winning in 1990, 1997, 2007 and 2008.
Rockwell, in her fifth season under head coach Jerritt Elliott at Texas, has established herself as one of the top assistants in the nation. She helped the University of Texas to a No. 2 recruiting class in the nation in 2012, which ultimately led to an NCAA National Championship that same year. The former Penn State Assistant Coach is primarily responsible for the setters and also serves as the team’s recruiting coordinator.
The AVCA formally presented both coaches their awards at the 2013 Jostens Coaches Honors Luncheon in Seattle, Washington earlier today. The luncheon was held in conjunction with the 2013 AVCA Annual Convention.