The new era of Nevada volleyball was kick-started on Jan. 12 and it’s a home- coming of sorts. Nevada athletic director Doug Knuth has tabbed Lee Nelson as the new head coach of the struggling program.
The 47-year-old Nelson is no stranger to the Wolf Pack, where he was assistant volleyball coach in 1999 and earned his graduate degree in history.
“The values and principles embraced by the members of the Wolf Pack athletic department meshed so well with my own that I immediately felt at home and I look forward to reaching out and sharing them with the Northern Nevada volleyball community,” Nelson said in a press release.
Nelson comes from Miami, Florida, where he was an assistant coach for the past three seasons with the Hurricanes. Miami reached the NCAA Tournament each of the three seasons.
“I am excited for Lee and his new opportunity,” said Hurricanes head coach Jose Gandara, who played collegiately with Nelson, in a press release. “The University of Nevada has made a great choice in selecting [Nelson]. He is a great coach and even a better person. We wish him the best in his future at Nevada.”
Prior to his stint at Miami, Nelson played collegiately at UC Santa Barbara and played professionally in Finland and the Netherlands. Nelson also spent time as the associate head coach of the men’s volleyball team at UC Santa Barbara between 2008-2011, which included an appearance in the NCAA Championship match in 2011.
“As a Nevada alum, Lee is excited about returning to Reno and participating in the growth and vibrancy of Wolf Pack athletics, the University of Nevada and the Northern Nevada community,” said Knuth in a press release. “I couldn’t be more excited to have Lee Nelson join our Wolf Pack family and begin the process of building our volleyball program.”
The sports desk can be reached at euribe@ sagebrush.unr.edu or on Twitter @Uribe_Eric.