Jerritt Elliott Named Pacific Region Coach of the Year

Dec. 6, 2000

Colorado Springs, Colo. - The following coaches have been selected by their region as Tachikara/AVCA NCAA Division I Region Coach of the Year. Each of the honorees will represent their region on the National Coach of the Year ballot. The awards will be officially presented at the Tachikara/AVCA Coach of the Year banquet in Richmond, Va., on Thursday, Dec. 14, 2000 at the American Volleyball Coaches Association National Convention.

Pacific Region
Jerritt Elliot, University of Southern California

Elliott, who has guided USC to a 27-2 record, led the Trojans to a No. 2 USA TODAY/AVCA Coaches Top 25 Poll ranking. USC has earned the right to host the Pacific Region Tournament as the No. 1 seed. Elliott's ability to coach young starters (three freshmen, two sophomores, one junior and one senior) has helped the team's success. He led USC to a share of the Pac-10 championship with Arizona and was Co-Pac-10 Coach of the Year to followup his 1999 Pac-10 Coach of the Year honor. All six USC starters earned all-conference recognition under Elliott's guidance the last two years. The Trojans began the season with a program-record 38-game win streak, despite having a youthful starting lineup. Elliott has compiled a 48-11 record in his two seasons as interim head coach at USC.

Central Region
John Cook, Nebraska

Nebraska, ranked No. 1 in the USA TODAY/AVCA Coaches Top 25 Poll for 13 consecutive weeks, claimed its fourth Big 12 Conference title in the last five years. The Huskers, the only remaining undefeated team in Division I at 30-0, could become just the second team in NCAA history to end the season with a perfect record. Nebraska, behind first-year Husker coach John Cook, has won 28 straight league matches dating back to last season. The Huskers have swept 23 of its 28 opponents this season, including 17 of its 20 league foes. Nebraska leads the nation in blocks per game and ranks second nationally in attack percentage. Cook held a 160-73 record at Wisconsin and earned the Tachikara/AVCA District Coach of the Year in 1997, before stepping down in 1999 to become associate head coach at Nebraska, later to succeed Terry Pettit as head coach for the 2000 season.

East Region
Jolene Nagel, Duke University

Duke, behind Coach Nagel's coaching, surpassed almost everyone's expectations this year after being picked sixth in the nine-team Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) 2000 Preseason Poll. The Blue Devils recorded a 21-13 record this year and a berth in the NCAA Tournament after falling below .500 in 1999 at 13-14. Duke produced upset victories of Florida State and Georgia Tech at the ACC Tournament to put the Blue Devils in the finals for the first time since 1995. Nagel has a career coaching record of 238-163 in 13 seasons. She earned the Tachikara/AVCA District 1 Coach of the Year in 1998 while at Georgetown.

Mideast Region
Pete Waite, University of Wisconsin

The Badgers, 30-3 in 2000 and hosting the Mideast Regional Tournament, have improved from a 22-10 record in 1999. Wisconsin ended the 1999 season ranked No. 23 and has been ranked as high as No. 4 this season. Wisconsin won the Big Ten Conference title with an 18-2 record. Waite has posted a 52-13 record in his two-seasons at Wisconsin. He is 318-115 for his career including his time at Northern Illinois, which produced four trips to the NCAA Tournament. Waite has taken his last five teams to the NCAA Tournament.

Midwest Region
Nancy Mueller, University of South Florida

Mueller led South Florida to a 28-6 overall record after leading the Bulls to a 15-18 mark in her first season as head coach. South Florida finished first in the conference after being picked sixth in the preseason poll. Mueller, who was selected the 2000 Conference USA Coach of the Year, led the Bulls to their longest winning streak in school history with 20 consecutive wins. South Florida was ranked No. 1 in the Midwest Region on Nov. 15. Mueller has a two-year head coaching record of 40-23.

Northeast Region
Jojit Coronel, George Washington University

Going into the 2000 season, the George Washington volleyball team was seen as the top team to challenge three-time champion Temple. George Washington brought five returning starting seniors to the floor. After serving as a first-year assistant coach in 1999, Coronel took over the head coach responsibilities following the tragic loss of former head coach Yvette Moorhead in mid-August. He kept the team on track and the players competed to their potential. The Colonials, 25-6 in 2000, earned the Atlantic 10 Conference's automatic bid to the NCAA championship tournament by winning the conference tournament before losing to South Carolina in the NCAA Tournament first round.

South Region
Mary Wise, University of Florida

Wise led a team that lost two AVCA All-Americans to a 29-4 record, a No. 10 ranking in the USA TODAY/AVCA Coaches Top 25 Poll and a spot in the Pacific Region Tournament. Florida starts three freshmen who took the team to its eighth Southeastern Conference (SEC) Tournament title in nine years. The Gators also went undefeated for the eighth time in SEC play to win their 10th consecutive SEC regular season championship. Wise became the fastest female coach to win 400 career victories (in terms of matches coached: 497), which ranks fourth all-time. Wise, the only woman in NCAA history to coach more than one NCAA national semifinal team, was named the SEC Coach of the Year for the eighth time in her 10-year career at Florida. She holds a 414-98 record in 13 years which started at Iowa State. Wise has earned the Tachikara/AVCA NCAA Division I National Coach of the Year twice (1992 and 1996) and been honored as the Tachikara/AVCA NCAA Division I Region Coach of the Year nine times.

West Region
John Dunning, Pacific

Dunning, who earned the Tachikara/AVCA District 7 Coach of the Year in 1999, is a repeat winner after leading Pacific to a 28-3 record. The Tigers captured their second straight Big West title with a 15-1 record in league action. Pacific, which advanced to the Mideast Region Tournament, entered this season minus six seniors from a year ago who accounted for 76 percent of last year's kills, 67 percent of last year's blocks, 61 percent of last year's assists and 50 percent of last year's digs. Dunning has led Pacific to one of the most dominant seasons in Big West history by losing just three games during the entire conference season. Pacific won 14 straight matches after starting out 1-1 in conference play. Dunning has led the Tigers to the fourth longest winning streak in school history, currently at 20 matches as well as a 50-game winning streak for a school record. Pacific has won two straight Big West titles and three in the last five seasons. Dunning has continued Pacific's streak as one of three teams to be ranked every week in the history of the USA TODAY/AVCA Coaches Top 25 poll, including a current No. 7 ranking. Dunning is 437-101 as a collegiate head coach.

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