NCAA: USC hires Crouch, BC tabs Kennedy, key setters transfer, men’s POWs, poll

New Boston College coach Jason Kennedy

Just more than three weeks after firing Mick Haley, USC announced Monday that it has hired Portland’s Brent Crouch as its women’s volleyball coach.

Since we last did a coaching-carousel roundup two weeks ago, a handful of hirings have been announced — including Laura Kuhn at Texas A&M — but the list of openings remains extensive. We go over them all below.

Two setters of note have transferred, Olivia Dailey from Kentucky to Ohio State and Kylee McLaughlin from Oregon State to Oklahoma.

In NCAA men’s volleyball, two-time defending-champion Ohio State is No. 1 in the first regular-season AVCA Division I-II coaches poll. The Buckeyes have played just once. Long Beach State, 4-0, is No. 2.

Crouch to USC: The hiring was announced on the USC website just before the start of the national college football championship game and on Crouch’s 43nd birthday.

Crouch was at Portland seasons. He took over a team that was winless in 2014 and went 55-66, which included 15-15 this past season. The former assistant at Saint Mary’s has also been an assistant on the national level, taking the U.S. Collegiate team to a gold medal at the 2016 U22 Global Challenge.

“USC women’s volleyball is a premier program and USC is a premier academic institution located in the heart of the best volleyball in the world, indoor and on the beach,” Crouch said in the USC news release. “I look forward to arriving on campus, meeting the team and the incoming players, and, of course, getting on the court and working.  It is time USC gets back to the Final Four and beyond. Fight On!”

This past season USC finished 25-10. The Trojans tied for second in the Pac-12 and then lost in five in the NCAA Tournament regional final to Florida. Subsequently, Haley’s contract was not renewed after 17 seasons.

Kennedy to BC: Speaking of USC, former assistant Jason Kennedy is the new coach at Boston College. He takes over the ACC program after three seasons with Haley, the last two as associate head coach.

Last week, Tom Mendoza left High Point for South Carolina of the SEC and Winthrop of the Big South hired Chuck Rey, who had been an assistant at Miami (Ohio). And Youngstown State of the Horizon League tapped Aline Scott, the head coach at Division III Hiram College.

Coaching openings remain: Add another one to the list after Hartford’s Mitch Kalick resigned Monday. The Hawks were 14-67 in his three seasons, 6-20 in 2017, 3-9 in the America East.

First, the hirings since our last report.

Kuhn, who goes by Bird, was an assistant at Kansas for seven years. The 35-year-old’s resume includes being an assistant at Miami and Appalachian State. She played at Georgia Tech.

Here’s an update on the list since we last reported. That includes Cal, where a spokesman told us that Matt McShane “is still the head coach but on a leave of absence and that Jenn Dorr is still the interim head coach.”
The Citadel
Eastern Illinois
Fresno State
Nicholls State
Southern Miss
Wright State

Transfers: Kentucky lost two to Ohio State, setter Olivia Dailey, an honorable-mention All-American in 2016 who lost her job to All-American freshman Madison Lilley, and redshirt-freshman middle blocker Jordan Fry. This past season Dailey played in six sets and Fry in five. Ohio State says they will both be eligible to compete for the Buckeyes in 2018.

Kylee McLaughlin, the Pac-12 freshman of the year, announced on Twitter that she’s leaving Oregon State to play for Oklahoma. McLaughlin played in all 33 matches for OSU this season.

Men’s poll, POWs: The MIVA gave its first weekly awards to two freshmen. Ball State outside hitter Ben Chinnici is the offensive player of the week, while Loyola setter Garrett Zoig is the defensive POW.

The EIVA honored two players from Saint Francis. Junior outside Cole Thompson is the offensive POW, while senior middle Keith Kegerreis got the defensive award.

Conference Carolinas tabbed King University senior opposite Kiel Bell as its player of the week.

The AVCA poll top 15 has Ohio State at No. 1, followed by Long Beach State, UCLA, Hawai’i and UC Irvine. Click here for the complete AVCA poll.