Todd Hollenbeck resigned from his position as UC Santa Cruz’s head men’s volleyball coach on June 26 to accept a job as an assistant coach for the University of Southern California’s men’s program.
“It’s a dream job of mine,” Hollenbeck said. “I’m from Southern California, I have family down there and and I grew up watching USC games.”
Hollenbeck became the head coach of the men’s volleyball program in 2013 after joining UCSC as an assistant coach in 2008. His overall record as the men’s head coach was 53-26. He also transitioned in and out of roles as the assistant and head coach for the men’s and women’s programs between 2008 and 2013.
Last season Hollenbeck led the Slugs to a NCAA quarterfinal appearance and was named the 2015 Division III Men’s Head Coach of the Year by the American Volleyball Coaches Association.
“It was a no-brainer once I found out he had applied,” said Jeff Nygaard, the head coach of USC men’s volleyball. “Todd is extremely passionate, extremely knowledgeable and personable. The amount of things he had to do in Santa Cruz to be successful is daunting, yet he brings so many strengths at a high level. He has a very unique standard for himself and those who are under him.”
Hollenbeck’s first practice with the Trojans is expected to be mid to late August. While he declined to comment on the specifics of his salary, he said he’ll be paid as a year-round full-time employee at USC. At UCSC, he was paid a full-time salary from January through June and was paid half of his full-time salary from July to December.
USC is a private university with 20 NCAA Division I teams. Its men’s volleyball program has won four NCAA Championships, appeared in the Final Four 14 times, and has trained 18 Olympians, 33 All-Americans and seven College Players of the Year.
“USC is a university that prizes its coaches,” Hollenbeck said. “They know how much coaches mean to their players.”
UCSC has not named a head coach to replace Hollenbeck, but a decision is expected in the next few weeks. The team graduated four seniors, setter Blake Chadwick, middle blocker Branden Torado, libero Jake Hurwitz and outsider hitter Jake Landel. All four were starters. Middle blocker and outsider hitter Jorge Reyes will be the team’s only senior this year.
“Todd’s resignation threw me and my team a little off guard,” Reyes said. “Now besides just having to rebuild our team, which will be very young, we also have to adapt to a new coach. But I wish him the best in his new job, he brought a culture of togetherness, family, unity and respect for each other and to our opponents.”