May 11, 2009
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Toledo has hired former Notre Dame assistant coach Greg Smith as its head women’s volleyball coach, the school announced during a press conference Monday afternoon at Toledo’s Savage Arena.
“We’re sad to see Greg leave us, but I believe this is a great opportunity for him and we’re very excited for him and his family,” Irish head volleyball coach Debbie Brown said. “Greg possesses a tremendous knowledge and passion for the game of volleyball and relates to student-athletes in an extremely positive fashion. He possesses a great deal of coaching experience, and we were fortunate to have him with our program. I believe he will be a tremendous asset to the University of Toledo and to the Toledo community as well.”
Smith comes to Toledo with an extensive coaching background, including six years as a head coach and nine seasons as an assistant coach. The Rochester, Ind., native has spent the last three years as the top assistant at Notre Dame, helping the Fighting Irish post a 50-41 overall record with a 28-14 BIG EAST Conference mark. He coached 10 all-conference honorees in addition to 2008 AVCA Honorable Mention All-American Christina Kaelin and 2007 AVCA Northeast Region Freshman of the Year Kellie Sciacca. He also helped the Fighting Irish to an NCAA Tournament appearance in 2006, which is one of six trips he has made to post-season play in his coaching career.
“I’m very excited and honored to be chosen to lead the Toledo women’s volleyball program,” said Smith, who becomes the fifth head coach in Toeldo’s 29-year volleyball history and replaces former coach Kent Miller who resigned to take a position at Illinois. “The commitment the university and athletic department is making to the volleyball program is impressive.”
Prior to returning to his home state for his three-year tenure with the Fighting Irish, Smith served as head coach at Virginia Tech for six seasons (2000-05). He registered an 81-94 (.463) win-loss ledger and a 37-38 (.493) conference mark, and he was honored as the 2002 BIG EAST Coach of the Year. The 2002 campaign saw the Hokies post a second-place league finish with a 10-3 record and earn a berth into the four-team league tournament. That team more than doubled its overall win total and won twice as many conference matches than it did during the 2001 season. During his time at Virginia Tech, Smith helped five different players earn a total of nine all-conference honors. He also oversaw the Hokies’ transition from an independent to a BIG EAST member in 2001 and then into the Atlantic Coast Conference in 2004.
Smith came to Virginia Tech from Ohio State, where he served as an assistant coach for three seasons and helped coach the Buckeyes to a trio of NCAA Tournament bids. While with the Buckeyes, he assisted in recruiting and training the team (both on-court and physical conditioning). Smith mentored a pair of Buckeye standouts in Jen Flynn and Katie Virtue. Flynn was a first-team All-Big Ten choice and a member of the USPV “Dream Team” in 2000. She joined the U.S. National Team in 2002 as its starting setter, while leading the squad to a silver medal at the 2002 World Championships. Virtue, Ohio State’s all-time assists leader and the 1999 Big Ten Freshman of the Year, was also a member of the U.S. National Team with Flynn.
Prior to his stint in Columbus, Smith spent two seasons as an assistant at Hofstra University where he helped lead the team to two consecutive America East Conference tournament championships and two NCAA Tournament appearances. Before his time at Hofstra, he was an assistant at the University of Indianapolis in 1994.
Smith graduated from Westmont College (Calif.) in 1990 with a bachelor’s degree in business and economics. He also had earned a bachelor’s in secondary education from Indianapolis in 1995.
Smith and his wife, Erica, have two daughters, Peytan and Reagan, and one son, Logan.