STONEHARPPHOTODEBUT

Stone Harper /Nevada Sagebrush Nevada head coach Lee Nelson speaks to the audience during his introductory press conference at Virginia Street Gym on Monday, Feb. 23. Nelson was hired away from Miami, where he was an assistant coach.

 

By Stone Harper

A new era in Nevada athletics began yesterday as the new volleyball coach Lee Nelson was introduced to fans at the Virginia Street Gym. Athletic Director Doug Knuth opened up the ceremonies by explaining the head coaching process and what really stuck out about Nelson.

“After our interviews we explained to the candidates that we would make our decision that weekend,” Knuth said. “Nelson told me that he needed 12-24 hours if he was going to be our choice, he then explained that he wanted to go back to Miami to talk to his players, and that hit me in the heart and made me realize we wanted him as our coach, because he cared.”

Nelson played collegiately at the University of California, Santa Barbara and his squad made it to the NCAA Tournament championship game. Nelson then spent time as an assistant coach at multiple

universities including Miami, UCSB and his first job at Nevada where he was also a graduate student.

“I knew this is a place I wanted to go,” Nelson said. “When I came to school here I got to work with world class professors and mentors who really helped me. So I knew if this job opened it was a gem and I wanted to jump on it.”

Though Nelson has only been on the job for a month he is already putting his team to work, practicing for a few hours a week and having his team lift four days a week. Although winning is important, Nelson is more focused on what his team can control.

“We want to focus on the process,” said Nelson. “We want to win, that’s a big part of any team but were are going to focus on the process.”

Stone Harper can be reached at sharper@sagebrush.unr.edu and on Twitter @StoneHarperNVSB