Nieves Named Head Volleyball Coach at Fresno State
Jan. 28, 2005
FRESNO, Calif. - Fresno State athletics director Scott Johnson announced today the hiring of Ruben Nieves as the head coach of the Bulldog volleyball team.
"In Ruben, we are getting a coach who I believe can take Fresno State to a higher level," Johnson said. "While at Stanford, he proved himself
as an outstanding coach for men's and women's volleyball on a national and international level. I am very excited and pleased that Ruben has agreed to become the new Bulldog volleyball coach."
In 11 seasons as the men's head coach at Stanford, from 1991-2001, Nieves directed one of the nation's premier volleyball programs. He guided the Cardinal to the school's only men's volleyball NCAA championship in 1997. Stanford was ranked in the nation's Top 10 in eight of his 11 seasons as head coach. The Cardinal reached the NCAA championship match in 1992 and he was selected the AVCA National Coach of the Year on two occasions (1992 and 1997). He had a career coaching record of 179-92 and a conference coaching record of 131-70. His 179 coaching victories are the most in Stanford history.
His best season was in 1997, when he guided the Cardinal to a 27-3 overall record and a win over UCLA in the NCAA championship match. In 1992, his second season as head coach, he guided Stanford to 24 wins, which still ranks as third-most in school history, and the NCAA championship match, losing to Pepperdine in the finals. He was selected the AVCA National Coach of the Year for his efforts.
During his tenure as head coach, Nieves coached 19 All-Americans and one AVCA National Player of the Year.
Prior to becoming the head coach, he served as the men's assistant coach for four seasons (1986-1990). The Cardinal reached the national championship match in 1989.
Nieves served as an assistant coach for the Stanford women's team from 1986-88 and helped the Cardinal reach the Final Four twice, including the 1987 NCAA championship match.
"His experience at Stanford with both the men's and women's programs will prove valuable," Johnson said. "He is a veteran head coach playing against tough competition. He brings great credibility and enthusiasm to the program. Ruben is a proven winner and a coach, who through his integrity and hard work, built a nationally prominent program. With his aggressive approach to scheduling and the contacts he has in the volleyball community, I'm sure he will provide an exciting schedule for volleyball fans throughout the Valley."
His international coaching experience is equally impressive. As head coach, he guided Team USA to the 2001 World University Games Gold Medal, the only men's volleyball team in United States history to win that title. He was the head of the delegation for the 2000 USA Boys Junior National Team that competed in Havana, Cuba and was an advisory staff member for the 1996 U.S. Olympic volleyball team.
Nieves returns to coaching after a three-year absence. He left his head coaching position at Stanford following the 2001 season to become the Manager of Trainer Development for the Positive Coaching Alliance at Stanford University.
"I am delighted to have the opportunity to direct the Fresno State volleyball program," Nieves said. "This is a place that I believe has all the necessary ingredients to build something truly special. This job presents an exciting blend of challenge and opportunity."
As a volleyball setter, Nieves won the Block "S" award at Stanford, playing from 1980-81. Nieves graduated from Stanford in 1981 with a degree in Spanish and earned his master's degree from Stanford in Education in 1982.
A native of Santa Barbara, Calif., Nieves attended San Marcos High School. He and wife, Annie, have an 8-year old son, Jesse. His brother, Omel, was a Bulldog basketball letterman (1982-83) and a member of the Bulldogs' 1983 NIT championship team.
Nieves replaces Lindy Vivas. The Bulldogs finished the 2004 season with a 15-13 record.
Ruben Nieves Coaching Record and Accomplishments
Head Coaching Accomplishments
Assistant Coaching Accomplishments