AVCA: Who or what has made you want to pursue coaching?
Elizabeth Cheek: My desire to pursue coaching comes from my love for the game of volleyball. My love of this sport began at the age of 12 and has continued to grow each and every year. I think that there is nothing better than being around this sport day in and day out. Whether it's coaching, playing, or watching I find joy in every part of this sport and would love nothing more than to be a head coach someday!
AVCA: Who or what has been your biggest coaching influence?
EC: Every coach in any sport that I have played has influenced my life and my coaching style. When I look back I have a few coaches who have, however, influenced me more than others. One of my club coaches, Neil Mason of Team Complete Athlete, taught me so many important lessons beyond volleyball. Neil taught me about having the desire for something and giving one hundred and ten percent to achieve it. At the time, I always felt as if he was demanding perfection from me, but now I understand that he was just trying to show me that I could always get better and to never give up. My high school coach, Mike Talamantes, taught me that no matter how strong the odds are against you that you can win if you truly believe it. My high school program was not a strong one until he became our head coach. We truly had a dream season my senior year due to the time and dedication that he gave to our program. He changed the way other teams looked at my high school. After my senior year, Rosary High School was no longer a program to laugh at but to be feared! Mike Talamantes also taught me one of the most important lessons that I still live by today which is to play for the name on the front of your jersey and to play something bigger than just yourself. I think that this is something that I will take with me forever in anything that I do. And finally, my college head coach Ken King taught me that your team is your family. I will always look back at my four years of college volleyball and remember all of the amazing memories that I have with my teammates and I can thank Coach King for this! He taught us what it truly means to care about each other. Many coaches seem to care about the wins and losses but with Coach King he cared about each and everyone one of us as if we were his own daughter. I truly believe that due to his care for every aspect of our life rather than just simply our volleyball ability is what led us to each and every win while I played for him. I believe that I was one of the lucky ones to get to play for someone like him.
AVCA: Please list your past and present coaching/playing experiences:
- Team Complete Athlete Club Volleyball 2002-2006
- Member of the Rosary High School Volleyball Program 2002-2006
- Member of the Le Moyne College Volleyball Program 2002-2010
- Viewpoint High School Boys Volleyball Assistant Coach 2006
- Graduate Assistant Le Moyne College Volleyball 2011-2012
AVCA: What are you most looking forward to at the 2012 AVCA Annual Convention?
EC: The 2012 AVCA Annual Convention offers so many opportunities, so choosing just one is difficult! I am really looking forward to attending both the semifinal and final matches as well as meeting so many coaches from all different programs and divisions! But more importantly, I am excited to attend many of the learning opportunities that will be made available to me! I cannot wait to bring all of the new knowledge that I gain back to Le Moyne to help a program that gave me so much throughout my four years as a student-athlete.