Coaching Volleyball Magazine October / November 2015 - Page 8

On the Court Beach Volleyball: NCAA Awards 2016 and 2017 National Championship Sites INDIANAPOLIS – The NCAA® Beach Volleyball Committee selected the host site for the inaugural National Collegiate Beach Volleyball Championship. The NCAA’s 90th and newest National Championship will debut May 6-8, 2016 at the Gulf Shores Public Beach and will be hosted by the city of Gulf Shores, Alabama and Orange Beach Sports Commission. The host institution for the inaugural beach volleyball championship will be the University of Alabama at Birmingham. The university and Gulf Shores have also been chosen as the hosts of the 2017 championship, which will be held May 5-7, 2017. “We are thrilled to bring the very first NCAA Beach Volleyball Championship to Gulf Shores,” said Marilyn MonizKaho’ohanohano, chair of the Beach Volleyball Committee and associate athletics director at University of Hawaii Manoa. “Gulf Shores provides a location where the sport originated ocean side and will provide a great experience for our student-athletes.” Beach volleyball is the fastest-growing NCAA sport with 47 sponsoring schools. The addition of the beach volleyball championship will become the 45th NCAA championship administered for women. The championship will have an eight-team bracket that will be played in a doubleelimination format with teams consisting of five pairs of female student-athletes. After being placed on the list of emerging sports for women in 2009, beach volleyball is the fifth sport to succeed from the emerging sports program. “We couldn’t be more excited to partner with the City of Gulf Shores, Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Sports Commission, USA Volleyball Gulf Coast Region and Hangout Music Festival Productions to host the very first NCAA championship for beach volleyball,” said Mark Ingram, director of athletics at University of Alabama at Birmingham. “This is an exciting time for the sport and for our program. We look forward to the opportunity and helping to make this a great event.” No stranger to hosting large sporting events, Gulf Shores has hosted the AVCA Collegiate Sand Volleyball Championship since 2012. “The Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Sports Commission and Tourism Offices are beyond excited to continue our relationship with the Collegiate Beach Volleyball National Championship and to begin our partnership with the NCAA,” said Beth Gendler, vice president of sales for the Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Tourism. “Our community has been supportive of this amazing sport for the four years the AVCA has hosted its championship here, and we are proud to help place the sport in the national spotlight even more as the NCAA begins conducting this championship.” 6 | October/November 2015 | COACHING VOLLEYBALL —Courtesy NCAA In Memoriam: Sandy Hoffman LEXINGTON, Ky. – AVCA Hall of Famer Sandy Hoffman passed away in late August. “Our volleyball world is a little smaller, a lot sadder. Remember her as the female warrior she was,” said AVCA Executive Director Kathy DeBoer. Few coaches and administrators have been as instrumental to the sport of volleyball, and specifically the New England Region, than Bentley University Head Coach Sandy Hoffman. 32 years at the helm of the Falcons, Hoffman is the winningest volleyball coach in New England and ranks fourth all time in NCAA Division II in wins with 758. Her squads have won the Northeast-10 Conference Regular Season Title outright nine times while earning conference coach of the year on eight occasions. However, her impact on volleyball goes above and beyond her win total or any individual accomplishment. She has consistently given back to the game she loves, participating in AVCA and NCAA Committees. Additionally, she is a regular at the AVCA Convention to share her knowledge and continue her own growth as a volleyball coach and administrator. Over the years, it’d be impossible to count the number of coaches she has touched in her journey on a regional and national level. Hoffman has been front and center in developing volleyball across New England. She started the New England All-Star Volleyball Camps, which is the