Coach set to be inducted into International Volleyball Hall of Fame

Published 8:10 pm Friday, July 20, 2018

University of Minnesota volleyball head coach Hugh McCutcheon will be inducted into the International Volleyball Hall of Fame, announced today by the organization. McCutcheon is just one of five 2018 inductees. The award ceremony will be held on Nov. 10 in Holyoke, Mass., the location of the sport’s birthplace.

“Being inducted into the International Volleyball Hall of Fame is such a humbling and profound honor,” McCutcheon said. “It’s quite surreal. In a profession that doesn’t allow for much looking back, this type of thing forces you to reflect and I just feel extremely grateful to all of the people that I’ve shared this journey with.”

The induction class is elected by a vote of past International Volleyball Hall of Fame inductees. All told, 140 individuals representing 24 different countries will have been inducted into the International Volleyball Hall of Fame.

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McCutcheon’s class marks the 33rd induction class. Also in this class are world class men’s volleyball players Gilberto “Giba” Godoy Filho from Brazil and Bas van de Goor from the Netherlands, Russian women’s player Evgenia Artamonova Estes and Japanese leader in the sport, Hiroshi Toyoda. 

“I consider it a wonderful privilege to be inducted with this 2018 class,” McCutcheon said. “They have all had a profound positive influence on the game of volleyball. It’s an honor to be inducted with them.”

McCutcheon led the U.S. Men’s National Volleyball Team program to the 2008 Olympic Games gold medal in Beijing. The U.S. Men’s National Team enjoyed one of its best seasons ever in 2008 under McCutcheon’s guidance as the team won all three of its major tournaments of the year including its first-ever FIVB World League championship in 2008 after a bronze medal finish in the same event in 2007, the first time the Americans earned back-to-back medals in the annual event. Less than four months after leading the U.S. men to gold, McCutcheon transitioned to the head coach position of the U.S. Women’s National Team.  He mentored the U.S. women to a 106-39 record in his four years including the 2012 Olympic Games silver medal in London becoming one of only two coaches in history to win medals with both genders. McCutcheon’s love for volleyball developed in New Zealand where he played on the junior and senior national teams from 1986-90 before coming to the United States. He was also a member of New Zealand’s national team in 1996 and represented his country on the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour in 1997.

Since he started his head coaching career in 2005, McCutcheon has been named the 2008 USOC National Coach of the Year, a three-time USOC National Volleyball Coach of the Year, the 2013 USA Volleyball All-time great coach award and the 2016 New Zealand Order of Merit.

Leaving the international game following the 2012 Olympics, McCutcheon’s career turned to the collegiate game where he took over the University of Minnesota volleyball program. Since his arrival, the Golden Gophers have gone to two Final Fours, won the 2015 Big Ten Championship and have finished in the top 16 five of the six years at the helm. The 2015 AVCA Coach of the Year and Big Ten Coach of the Year, McCutcheon has coached 10 individuals to 12 All-America certificates, including seven First Team All-Americans and a National Player of the Year (Sarah Wilhite).

The International Volleyball Hall of Fame induction festivities, presented by Spalding, kick off with a special alumni reception on Nov. 8, at historic Judd Gymnasia at Springfield College — site of the first volleyball demonstration, a Mayor’s reception on Nov. 9 at Wistariahurst Museum in Holyoke, followed by the Ring and Plaque Ceremony inside the International Volleyball Hall of Fame from 11a.m. to noon ET Nov. 10 with the formal enshrinement dinner and ceremony taking place the evening of Nov. 10 following the Mizuno meet and greet at 5 p.m. ET.