Maes Named Head Coach at Virginia

University of Nebraska volleyball coach John Cook confirmed Monday afternoon that head assistant coach Lee Maes is leaving the Husker program to become the head coach at the University of Virginia.

Maes spent three seasons on the Husker staff, handing player training and opponent scouting and working extensively with the middle blockers while serving as the Huskers' recruiting coordinator. In his three seasons at Nebraska, Maes' teaching was evident, as the Huskers went 96-5 with three Big 12 titles and two appearances in the NCAA Championship match. He helped develop 13 AVCA All-Americans in his time at Nebraska, including national players of the year Christina Houghtelling (2005) and Sarah Pavan (2006).

Cook said that Maes has played a vital role in Nebraska's success over the last three years, highlighted by helping the Huskers win the school's third NCAA title.

"Since Lee's arrival, Nebraska has been on an incredible run over the last three years," Cook said. "We are thankful for his hard work and effort and helping Nebraska volleyball reach the next level. One of Lee's long-range goals was to become a head coach, and Virginia presented a great opportunity for him. They are very lucky to have him as their head coach, and it shows the commitment that Virginia is making to become a successful program."

Cook said that a national search is underway.

Statement from Lee Maes

"I've had the great fortune of being a Husker for three years. My growth as a person and coach have matured as a result of the wonderful relationships fostered and experiences endured here in Lincoln. Someone once said, 'When you want what you've never had, you must do what you've never done.' I know it takes a deep commitment to change and an even deeper commitment to grow. It is because of growth that I'm venturing to the University of Virginia to pursue new opportunities and possibilities both personally and professionally. Nebraska's prominence athletically and academically is a result of a university who involves and empowers quality people who have the talent and attitude to operate in synergy with the mission of duty and service at the forefront of their being.

"Our volleyball program's success should be attributed to the leadership of Coach Cook. He allowed me to make a difference in the program by putting me in the very heart of things, not at the periphery. When a good leader does that, people feel centered and that gives their work meaning. I'm grateful to Coach Cook for the opportunities as well as his friendship and support in my new endeavor. It is with much appreciation that I also honor my current and past partners, Lindsay Peterson, Lizzy Stemke, Tina Westerhold, and Charlene Tagaloa. They are deeply committed servants who have tirelessly contributed to the positive welfare of the program and team. Not to be remiss, a special thank you to all those who've supported our program from the administration, staff, fans, donors, boosters, alumni and friends. My final acknowledgement is dedicated to the team. Each member is a valued treasure to me because of their commitment, loyalty, respect, effort, and genuine kinship. I've been fortunate to serve them as coach and friend."

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