USAV, Anaheim Finalize Contract for U.S. Women

April 21, 2009, 2:58 p.m. (ET)

USA Volleyball Contacts:

Bill Kauffman
Manager, Media Relations and Publications
Phone: 719-228-6800

B.J. Hoeptner Evans
Manager, Media Relations and Publications
Phone: 719-228-6800

City of Anaheim Contact:

Ruth Ruiz
Phone: (714) 765-5060
Cell: (714) 420-7797

ANAHEIM, Calif. (April 21, 2009) – USA Volleyball and the City of Anaheim are pleased to announce the agreement to bring the U.S. Women’s National Volleyball Team (Women’s Team) to Anaheim from Colorado Springs has been finalized.

The agreement also designates Anaheim as the Exclusive Official Host City for the USA Men’s and Women’s National Volleyball Teams through 2016.

During his 2009 State of the City Address, Anaheim Mayor Curt Pringle proposed that the Women’s Team should join the U.S. Men’s National Volleyball Team (Men’s Team) in Anaheim as Southern California’s climate and Anaheim’s strong community support has proven successful for the Men’s Team.

“We couldn’t be happier to welcome the U.S. Women’s National Volleyball Team to Anaheim,” said Mayor Pringle. “Since the Men’s Team joined our community in 2006, there is no question our residents, businesses and visitors have benefitted from their presence, and will continue to with the addition of the Women’s Team.  This relocation also enhances Anaheim’s resume as a premier environment for world-class sports teams.”

“The partnership between the City of Anaheim and the U.S. Men’s National Volleyball Team contributed significantly to the gold medal success achieved in the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, “said Doug Beal, CEO for USA Volleyball. “It is a tribute to Anaheim’s commitment to Olympic sport that they have expanded our existing relationship to also become the Exclusive Official Host of our U.S. Women’s National Team – which establishes a proven foundation for the sustained success of both programs as we look to the London 2012 Games and beyond.”

“Bringing the Women’s Team to Anaheim is a huge positive step for this Team and for USA Volleyball,” said U.S. Women’s National Team Head Coach Hugh McCutcheon. “The success we had with the U.S. Men’s Team at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing was in large part due to us training in Anaheim - and we are confident that bringing the Women here can lead to similar levels of success. Mayor Curt Pringle and the entire city of Anaheim has embraced USA Volleyball and we are extremely grateful for their support. I know that both the U.S. Men's and Women's programs will work tirelessly to represent this city to the best of our ability."

The U.S. Women’s Team claimed the silver medal at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, and is currently ranked second in the world.  The Team finished 2008 with a record of 22-11. The popularity of women’s volleyball is seen throughout the high school, collegiate and club levels.  More than 320 Division I universities throughout the country have women’s volleyball teams as part of their athletic programs.  In addition, nearly 406,000 participants from approximately 15,000 high schools around the country played girls’ high school volleyball in 2007.  Volleyball is the fourth largest girls’ high school sport after basketball, track and field, and softball.

USAV announced last week that Karch Kiraly, Olympian and the most decorated player in the sport of volleyball, has joined McCutcheon and will serve as assistant coach to the Women’s Team.  This is Kiraly’s first foray into coaching at the international level.

“This is an exciting time for me and my family,” said Kiraly, a San Clemente resident. “The U.S. Women’s Team’s move to Anaheim was a factor in my accepting the coaching position.  Not only do I get to work with Hugh McCutcheon, and not only are the players tremendously talented, but I also can be close to home.  I am thrilled to be a part of the team’s future success.”

USAV recently announced the appointment of Alan Knipe as head coach for the Men’s Team.  Knipe succeeds McCutcheon, who accepted the Women’s Team head coaching position after leading the Men’s Team to a gold medal at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. Knipe is currently finishing the season at Cal State Long Beach, where he has been head coach of the 49ers for the past nine years. Knipe also played on the U.S. Men’s Team from 1992-93 and competed at the FIVB World League Tournament.

The City of Anaheim and USA Volleyball are grateful for the support of these local sponsors who have contributed to the success of the U.S. Men’s Team and eagerly await the arrival of the U.S. Women: American Sports Centers; Competitive Athletes Training Zone (CATZ); Anaheim White House; JT Schmid’s Restaurant & Brewery; PepZ Pizza & Eatery; OC Sports Grill; and numerous Anaheim/OC Visitor and Convention Bureau member hotels.