Interview: Stephen Pierce

Date: March 31, 2017

Download the audio file (right click and “Save As…” / 67mb – 1:37:58)

The one book mentioned in the interview was Coaching Volleyball Successfully by Sally Kus.

What did you think?

We’d love to hear your thoughts, comments, etc. What did you find most interesting or surprising? What was something that could influence your own coaching? What additional question(s) would you like to hear Stephen answer?

Just fill out the comment box below.

Volleyball Coaching Wizard Tod Mattox

Coaching with a Subversive Streak

Tod Mattox likes to do things a little differently than other coaches. It seems to be working! He’s one of the most respected high school coaches not just in his local San Diego area volleyball community, but throughout California and beyond.

His resume includes:

  • Over 600 wins in 30 years of high school coaching, including 7 San Diego County Championships
  • USA Volleyball Leadership Award in 2008
  • 2016 Head Coaches Award from the San Diego Hall of Champions
  • AVP beach coach
  • Long-time coaching clinician

Here’s some of what Tod discusses in his interview:

– Challenging assumptions

– Managing team parents

– Coaching evaluations and looking to improve as a coach over the season

– Working with players on college recruiting

Play this excerpt for a taste of the sort of insights and ideas you’ll get from the full interview:

Get access to Tod’s interview now for just a $14 contribution to the Volleyball Coaching Wizards project.










Note: PayPal is used to process the payment, but a PayPal account is not required.

 

High school coaches can’t be among the world’s best?

Volleyball Coaching WizardsSorry if this seems like a rant. We need to respond to a comment that speaks to the very heart of the Volleyball Coaching Wizards project, though. Someone who rated the first 8 cover design options under consideration left it anonymously.

For the cover shown at left they said:

“how does high school .. and world’s greatest coaches make sense – only in usa perhaps”

Firstly, the “High School Greats” bit is just a sample bit of text offered off the top of the head as a placeholder. You can see the “developing the team concept” alternative used in some of the designs. Actual book topics are not decided yet.

Second, and more importantly, why can’t high school coaches be among the world’s best?

Is it because most of the world doesn’t have high school volleyball? Or is it because high school coaches are youth coaches, and youth coaches can’t be considered great?

The whole point of Volleyball Coaching Wizards is to bring to light coaches who excel, regardless of level. This doesn’t just mean those at the very highest level.

We cannot make the assumption that just because a coach spends their career at the high school or youth level they couldn’t be just as successful if they coached college, professional, or international level players. Similarly, we can’t assume high level coaches are just as effective coaching younger, less experienced players.

Certainly, there are Wizard coaches who started their careers in the youth or high school ranks and moved up to higher levels. There are also, however, many coaches out there who either through choice or circumstance found themselves in a niche where they thrived and achieved well above average success.

There are WAY more coaches at the lower levels of the game than there are at the top level. Some will work their way up the ladder. Most won’t. Everyone along the spectrum deserves to not only get to understand what those coaching at higher levels than theirs think and do, but also the actions and thoughts of those with great success at their own level.

That is a major point of Volleyball Coaching Wizards.

P.S.: This same person also made the comment “who knows or cares about the authors names – you are not Grisham – yet … keep it small” for one of the other designs. Seems like someone perhaps got up on the wrong side of the bed this morning. :-)

John Dunning on defining team culture

At the Art of Coaching Volleyball clinic in Fort Worth, TX (held at TCU), John got a chance to sit down with John Dunning, Terry Liskevych, and Russ Rose for a set of interviews. They were not full Wizards style interviews – which generally go 1:30-2:00 hours in length – but they addressed some similar themes. We’ll be releasing clips from those interviews on our YouTube channel over time – five of them this week.

Here’s the first, featuring John Dunning talking about developing and enforcing team culture.

Volleyball Coaching Wizard Dave Shoji

A Coaching Institution

Dave Shoji is Hawaii volleyball. For more than 40 years he’s been at the helm of a college program which is always at or near the top of the annual attendance figures rankings, with thousands of people coming out to watch his teams play. How many of us would love to coach in front of crowds like that?

His resume includes:

  • More NCAA Division I Women’s Volleyball wins than anyone (approaching 1200)
  • Four national championships and over 30 trips to the NCAA tournament
  • 12-time conference, 10-time region, and twice national Coach of the Year
  • AVCA Hall of Fame inductee and named on of the all-time great coaches by USA Volleyball in 2002

Here’s some of what Dave discusses in his interview:

– Staying in one position for so long

– The pressure of coaching where there is a lot of fan support

– Dealing with problem personalities in the team

– Remembering that coaching is about the players, not about the coach

Play this excerpt for a taste of the sort of insights and ideas you’ll get from the full interview:

Get access to Dave’s interview now for just a $14 contribution to the Volleyball Coaching Wizards project.










Note: PayPal is used to process the payment, but a PayPal account is not required.

 

Volleyball Coaching Wizard John Corbelli

Assistants Get Credit as Well

John Corbelli is the first interview of someone who has primarily been an assistant coach through is career, notably being a part of a spouse coaching duo. He is well respected as one of the best trainers around.

His resume includes:

  • More than 20 years as assistant coach to his wife at Texas A&M (nearly 500 wins, and almost 20 trips to the NCAA tournament – 2 Final Fours, 30 All-American selections)
  • Three years as an NCAA Division I head coach in his own right.
  • Assistant to Arie Selinger for the USA Women’s National Team during the 1984 Olympics

Here’s some of what John discusses in his interview:

– The qualities of a good assistant coach

– The culture of Hawaiian volleyball

– Coaching with and against your spouse

– Incorporating structured and game-like training approaches

Play this excerpt for a taste of the sort of insights and ideas you’ll get from the full interview:

Get access to John’s interview now for just a $14 contribution to the Volleyball Coaching Wizards project.










Note: PayPal is used to process the payment, but a PayPal account is not required.