May 21, 2006
Greg Smith, the head coach for the last six seasons at Virginia Tech, has been hired as an assistant coach for the University of Notre Dame women’s volleyball team, it was announced this week by Irish head coach Debbie Brown. Smith – the 2002 BIG EAST Conference Coach of the Year and a native Hoosier – replaces Robin Davis, who was hired last month as the new head coach at Boise State University.
“Certainly a factor in my decision to hire Greg is my remembering how well he trained and prepared his teams to play against us during the three years Virginia Tech was a part of the BIG EAST,” said Brown. “I know he is an excellent recruiter, trainer and teacher and I’m very excited to have him bring his knowledge to our program. I didn’t anticipate being able to hire someone with Greg’s experience for this position, and I’m thrilled that he has enthusiastically agreed to come help us continue to elevate our program. As excited as I am about what he will bring to our program as a coach, I’m even more excited about what he brings as a person. I have the utmost respect for him and know he will display integrity in all that he does. He will represent our volleyball program and the University of Notre Dame in the best way possible.”
A native of Rochester, Ind., Smith led the Hokies to an 81-94 (.463) overall mark over the past six years, including a 37-38 (.493) record in conference play. His top performance came in 2002, when he led the Hokies to a second-place finish in the BIG EAST Conference – behind Notre Dame – with a 10-3 record and a berth in the four-team league tournament in the school’s second of three seasons of conference membership. That Tech team more than doubled its win total from the previous season and won twice as many conference matches as it did during the 2001 campaign. A year ago, Virginia Tech was 13-18 overall and finished ninth in the Atlantic Coast Conference with an 8-14 mark.
“I’m very excited to be coming to Notre Dame and to become a part of a program of that caliber – one that is among the top in the country,” said Smith. “I think being a part of Coach Brown’s staff will be an amazing experience for me. I am looking forward to helping her and the team in whatever capacities I am able to in order to allow us to achieve our goals. I am very excited about the opportunity, and I have a great deal of respect for both Notre Dame and Coach Brown and the success she has had throughout her career.”
Smith has faced the Irish three times from the bench opposite Brown. He dealt Notre Dame a rare three-game conference loss in Blacksburg, Va., in 2002 and then helped the Hokies push the 12th-ranked Irish to five games in front of a Joyce-Center-record crowd of 8,643 the following season.
During his time at Virginia Tech, Smith helped five different players earn a total of nine all-conference honors. He oversaw the Hokies’ transition from an independent (in his first season, 2000) into the BIG EAST Conference (2001-03) and then into the ACC (2004-present).
Smith came to Virginia Tech from Ohio State, where he served as an assistant coach for three seasons. He was successful as an assistant at OSU, helping coach the Buckeyes to the NCAA tournament each year. His duties included assisting in recruiting and training the team, both on the court, and in its physical conditioning.
Prior to his stint in Columbus, Smith spent two seasons as an assistant coach at Hofstra University. At Hofstra, he helped lead the team to two consecutive America East Conference tournament championships and two NCAA Championship appearances. In all, Smith has coached five seasons in the NCAAs.
Before his coaching duties at Hofstra, he was an assistant coach at the University of Indianapolis, in 1994. He also served as one of the head volleyball coaches for the Circle City Volleyball Club in Indianapolis.
Smith was an assistant varsity coach at Rochester (Ind.) High School from 1992-93, also serving as head coach of the freshman squad. During his tenure, he assisted the varsity team to the regional playoffs in 1992 and state semifinals in 1993.
He graduated from Westmont (Calif.) College in 1990 with a bachelor’s degree in business and economics. He then received a bachelor’s in education from Indianapolis in `95. A letterwinner in tennis at Westmont, Smith also served as an assistant basketball coach there.
Smith and his wife, Erica, have two daughters, Peytan (3 years old) and Reagan (six months).