This is the first entry in my coaching logs for the women’s and men’s Medaille College volleyball teams. As was the case last year, I will keep logs for both teams with a combination of 1-team focused and joint updates as the situation indicates. I have been doing coaching logs each year since 2013. It’s a process I’ve come to find both personally useful and something readers also latch on to at times, leading to some interesting conversations.
At the time this post goes up, we’re 1 month out from the start of the women’s preseason. The players report on August 20th and do the usual paperwork. We’ll have our first team meeting of the year after that. The next day the fun begins!
Here’s what’s been going on since the last update from 2020-21.
I mentioned previously that their strong classroom performance made the women’s team eligible for the USMC/AVCA Team Academic Award. They have now officially earned it, with the press release going out yesterday.
The action is going thick and fast for the 2022 class. We’ve already had a couple of kids on campus and more are in the process of making plans. Our target count for each team is to bring in 7 new players. That really covers all positions, so the efforts are broad-based.
The women’s schedule – barring surprises – is set. We’re going to play 23 matches across 20 dates, starting on September 3rd. In expectation of a tight budget (which really isn’t looking to be the case), I keep things pretty close for our non-conference play. We’re looking at an overnight stay the first weekend, but even that is more about playing schedule than distance. To kick things off, on August 31st we have an alumni match.
For the men, I still have two midweek dates to fill.
It’s definitely been a challenging time where our 2021 roster is concerned for the women. At one point, between returning players and incoming recruits I was looking having something like 15 on the team for the season to come. Right now I’ve got 9, potentially 10. In the last couple of weeks I’ve heard from four returners that they won’t be coming back, mainly because of schedule issues.
This is something I’m hearing from other coaches here as well. Last year, since they didn’t really have proper seasons for the most part, a lot of student-athletes took jobs and generally got used to a life without sports. Basically, all of the players who’ve pulled out have done so because they prioritized jobs over volleyball, essentially.
I do have at least 3-4 young ladies interested in joining the team as tryout prospects. Hopefully for some unpolished gems in that group. 🙂
On the men’s side we’ve got 13 on the books. That roster really won’t settle in until later on, though.
My main assistant coach from last year told me last week he’s leaving the program. Not really a big surprise. In any case, it’s something a coach in my position has to expect. After all, assistants leave – especially when they’re part-time. I’d already been on the lookout for additional coaching help. A couple of the guys from the men’s team have said they want to help out as student assistant, and an incoming freshmen emailed recently about joining the program as a manager. I’ll definitely take it!
A former Medaille assistant has indicated she’d like to come back. Unfortunately, she’s not really going to be eligible to be in the gym with us in the Fall, though she could potentially help out with video work. I’m currently on the lookout for 1-2 others to come in. I have a budget of $6000 for each team, so really have to look in the local market.
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