Men's volleyball has the smallest percentage of athletes that get to compete in college than any other sport in the country," begins Greg Reitz, Head Coach of Men's and Women's Volleyball. "We are able to recruit from across the country because of this. That brings individuals to Lourdes that otherwise would have never considered it. I would say we are playing a pretty important role in the growth of our institution because of this."
Only three colleges or universities in the state of Ohio compete at the varsity level for men's volleyball. "Being one of those institutions is pretty special," adds Coach. "We are able to give a group of men the opportunity to continue playing the game that they have grown to love."
Coach Reitz is well known and respected in the sport of volleyball. "My first coaching job was as a boy's club volleyball coach," he says. "From there, I added boy's high school coach to my resume and then men's junior college coach.
"I have also had the opportunity to serve as a player/coach on several teams over the years including my Athletes in Action team that competed in Russia and the Ukraine."
Operating as Head Coach for both teams, he says he does not coach differently for the genders. "I have always tried to coach my female players the same way. We run a similar style of play for each team.
"I was coached by some of the greatest minds in the game and have emulated the coaching styles of many of them to come up with a style that is all my own. My educational background also lends itself well for training technique so that is my primary focus regardless of gender.
"The biggest difference between the two sports is the height above the floor. The net is 8 inches higher for the men's game."
Although they began the inaugural season with a somewhat limited number of players, Coach says the group of players that he and Assistant Coach Mike Froehlich have assembled is a strong one. "We anticipate a very competitive team who is fun to watch on the court. My hope is that their personalities show through as they compete and the resulting product is a great one."
Excited to expose northwest Ohio to the sport of men's volleyball, Coach Reitz concludes, saying, "We look forward to developing a program that is very competitive and can foster the growth of the game in the region. I am confident that once people see the game played, they will have an appreciation for the athleticism displayed on the court. This is definitely not just a girls' game!"
For the latest news on men's volleyball, visit the Lourdes Athletics website.