Colorado Springs, Colo, March 30, 2005 - Rich Zeciski, USA Volleyball’s 2003 Developmental Coach of the Year, will join the High Performance Program as a coordinator in April, the organization announced Wednesday.
Zeciski fills the void left by the departure of Todd Dagenais, who is now an assistant coach to Mick Haley at the University of Southern California. Zeciski’s primary focus will be as the lead staff overseeing girls’ programs, in particular the youth age group.
Rich has devoted his life to volleyball, said Tom Pingel, USA Volleyball’s Director of High Performance National Programs. He lives it on a daily basis. He will pour his heart and soul into this job; I’m convinced of that. Rich is already working hard as far as getting up to speed on what he needs to be doing, and we are in daily communication.
His experience at many different levels the collegiate game, coaching at the club level and his experience on the international side with the Gynt are all pluses, Pingel added. He’ll have impact on the department from the day he arrives.
For the past two years Zeciski the founder and club director of the Team Z Volleyball Club in Cincinnati, Ohio has been the head coach of the USA Girl’s Youth National Team. Last year’s team won the gold medal at the Norceca Zone Championships in Puerto Rico and qualified for the 2005 FIVB Girls’ U-18 World Championships in Macau, China.
I am really happy that Tom and (USA Volleyball Ceo) Doug (Beal) extended me the opportunity to work with USA Volleyball, Zeciski said. I have known Collin (Powers) for quite a bit of time. The opportunities that I have had, not only in camps and by coaching teams, have been exciting. I hope I can have a greater impact in some way by working with them and everyone else at USA Volleyball to help grow the game and create a better experience for everybody that wants to play Volleyball in the United States.
Zeciski, a former collegiate head coach at the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University, has helped lead the Ohio region into becoming one of the core development areas for players and coaches in the USA.
In 2002 and 2003 Zeciski coached Team Z to rare back-to-back USA Junior Olympic Volleyball Open Championship titles with his 16s and 17s squads, respectively. At the end of 2003 he was named USA Volleyball’s Developmental Coach of the Year and became a nominee for the United States Olympic Committee’s Developmental Coach of the Year award.
Leaving Team Z will not be easy for Zeciski, but he is excited about the role he will help play on the future of the game.
I don’t think anybody ever leaves coaching quickly or without some type of reticence, especially if you’re into it, he admitted. Team Z is a relatively new organization but it has had a certain amount of success. So building that program we have grown from one team to five to now 10 and leaving the kids is a little difficult. But I think that can be overcome with the excitement of this new position.