Terry Liskevych Comments at Introductory Press Conference
April 14, 2005
Q: How did it come about that Oregon State gets a coach of your caliber to come back to the coaching profession?
A: The administration has been great in forging a vision, a vision of excellence. It is something that really captured my fancy to get back into coaching in the Pac-10, the best conference in the nation.
Q: There must be something that made you want to get back to coaching? Were you looking for the right fit and the Oregon State opportunity came at the same time you had the urges to get back into coaching?
A: No question. I needed a break from coaching. Coaching the national team for twelve years was very excruciating with the travel and it was tough to see my kids grow up. They were eleven and eight and I just needed a break to be there in the formative years while they were in high school. Now that my son, Mark, is out there in college as a sophomore and my daughter, Christa, will begin her senior year (of high school), this is a great opportunity and I looked for the right fit. I wanted to have a university that is supportive, an administration that has vision and is supportive, and also I want to be at the level where you play the best volleyball that is possible and Oregon State provided all of those.
Q: Give us your first impressions about why this is a good fit for you and your excitement for what's ahead for Oregon State volleyball.
A: I think that this is a sleeping giant from a volleyball standpoint. They've had success and we just want to build on that. The team has been wonderful on the occasions I've had with them. I think they have a great foundation to build on. To be great will take a lot of years and it is going to be something that we'll work at methodically and I think that we have the support base here to make that happen.
Q: Part of your vision for OSU volleyball is more than just wins and championships, which are important, but you also want to be involved with the community. Tell us more about that vision for that too.
A: I think that building a program is a very intricate process. First, the team is the most important. My philosophy is that if you have the right team, the right people athletically, volleyball skill-wise, and the right people, you're going to have a great program. So they are the cornerstone. Outside of that is the department, the people working in athletics and then branch out to the campus. We're going to involve the faculty, the staff, and the student body. Then, we're going to reach out to the community. This community has been supportive of volleyball, we're going to push to get a big following here in the gym, by spending time going out and getting to know the people in the community. Not only the business people, but everybody in the community. We're going to take our team and get out and do clinics at the elementary, middle schools and high schools to get those kids to have their heroines that they'll know and can touch and then come out to see them play. Then finally, the State of Oregon. This is a great volleyball state, it has great traditions in volleyball that goes back many, many years. We're going to get all of those people involved and excited. And that is the way we're going to grow this.
Q: Where do you start with the team you have here over the next few months before you start in the fall?
A: First of all, Nancy Somera was a great athlete herself and is a very good coach. I think that she has the building blocks of this team understanding what hard work is. Getting to know the team is my first goal; them to know me, me to know them; and knowing what we need to do to make them the very best. How to pull the greatness out of them, is my job over the next couple months. Then, really to get the program in step, by hiring my staff and learning the ropes of the university. That will really be my first couple of months here and I'm ready to go at it.
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