bleedCrimson.net: First time seeing all the kids in the gym together, what were your initial impressions?
Mike Jordan: We're athletic, our skill level has a long way to go. We've got a lot of young players and so there's a lot to learn. We're going to find ourselves walking through a lot of stuff systems wise to make sure they understand it and watching a lot of film to help them as much as possible. It's going to be a lot of work. But we are very athletic. I think we've got a shot to be very good.
bc.net: With having three seniors and so many young players will you rely on those seniors more this year than maybe in years past?
MJ: We always rely heavily on your seniors every year. That's not going to change this year. We've got some good upper classmen that are good players and they understand leadership and they're really good people. I think they'll do a really good job taking care of the younger players.
bc.net: You've got a new assistant, Don Flora, what's he brought to the program and how are the girls adjusting to him?
MJ: He's got a great energy and any time you can get somebody with that kind of experience as a head coach, he's been successful so we've been able to sit down and talk a lot of volleyball. It's been refreshing. I think he's going to add a lot to our program and we're excited to have him here.
We got going in the spring together and I think things are fitting well. It's not like he's new now because he had the spring. We're getting on the same page and it's been a lot of fun.
bc.net: You've got two former assistants, Debby Baker at Southern Utah and Ashley Hardee at North Dakota who are both entering their first year of competition with their teams. What advice did you give them when they took over their programs and what advice would you give them as they begin their first year schedule?
MJ: In Debby's case she's starting a program from scratch and there's going to be some tough times. You've got mostly young players, she's got a couple JC transfers that she likes a lot but it's rough going in the beginning. You're going to take your lumps but you've got to stay committed to your beliefs and you've gotta believe in yourself. They're both good coaches, both Debby and Ash and they're very good recruiters and they're going to get the talent level up at their respective places and eventually they're going to do very well.
I didn't give them a whole lot of advice, they don't need much. They're more than ready to do this. I think they just have to understand that it's going to be rough going in the beginning when you're rebuilding something. In Ash's case with North Dakota, they were a Division II making the transition to Division I. They're going primarily from a Division II schedule to a Division I schedule and that's going to be tough. He may not have a whole lot of Division I caliber athletes on his roster right now. So from that standpoint he's going to take some lumps along the way that first year too.
But like I said if they stay committed and work hard with their players every day they're going to do just fine.