Colorado Springs, Colorado, April 2, 2009 – USA Volleyball has announced that Alan Knipe will be the new U.S. Men’s national team head coach for the 2009-2012 Olympic quadrennial.
The 40-year-old Knipe will take a leave of absence from his head coach position at Long Beach State, where he has been in the position for the past nine years. Two of Knipe’s former players – David Lee and Scott Touzinsky – were members of the U.S. Men’s Olympic Volleyball team that won the gold medal in 2008 in Beijing. Knipe was an assistant coach when U.S. captain Tom Hoff played at Long Beach State.
“Anyone who gets involved with Volleyball sets their sights on being involved with the Olympic team,” Knipe said. “I don’t think that changes from your playing days to your coaching days.
“I would not have been able to take this position if I did not work at Long Beach State. They were great to work with in making this happen and giving me a leave of absence.”
Knipe takes over for Hugh McCutcheon, who guided the U.S. Men to victories at the 2008 FIVB World League and the Beijing Olympics. McCutcheon took over the U.S. Women’s team in January.
“I am very excited to have Alan join the USA Volleyball staff and lead our men’s team toward London in 2012. This is a very big hire,” USA Volleyball CEO Doug Beal said. “His experience and success with USAV’s national and high performance programs have been outstanding. I look for him to continue the momentum the U.S. men built in 2008.”
McCutcheon said, “I think Alan will do a great job continuing the success of the men’s program. He’s an excellent coach with a lot of collegiate experience that will allow a seamless and successful transition into the international arena.”
Knipe said the support he has received from former U.S. Men’s team coaches was a big reason he took the position.
“The U.S. Men's National Team has an amazing fraternity of former coaches that have always been willing to help the current staff. I’ve spoken to a number of the former coaches and the guys who have been involved in previous years,” Knipe said. “They have offered their support during the transition and throughout the quad. I feel fortunate to have so many valuable resources willing to help continue the wonderful tradition that has been cultivated over many years."
Knipe’s first competition with the U.S. Men will be the Pan American Cup on June 1-7 in Colima, Mexico. The team will begin FIVB World League play on June 13-14 in Rotterdam, Netherlands.
Knipe has a long relationship with USA Volleyball. Most recently, he served as the head coach for the U.S. Men's National Team at the 2008 Pan America Cup in Winnipeg, Canada, where it won a gold medal.
He was the head coach for the U.S. Men’s team that won a bronze medal at the 2007 World University Games in Thailand.
Knipe played for the U.S. National Team in 1992-93 and competed in the World League.
In 1995, Knipe played for Spoleto in the Italian Pro League and in 1996 he played for the Zellik Club in Belgium.
(Photo courtesy of Long Beach State Volleyball team)