Joe Mahan has been involved with the game of volleyball for more than 25 years as a player, coach, and parent. He has more than a decade of experience coaching college and club volleyball, serving as an Assistant Coach at the NCAA Division I level (Indiana State) and a Head Coach at both NCAA D-III (Hood College) and NAIA (Robert Morris College-IL) levels. Coach Mahan also has co-directed and coached at the club level in Indiana (Hoosier Region) and Maryland (Chesapeake Region). Along the way, he has been both an athletic administrator and faculty member at the college level. These days, he enjoys watching his daughter, Erin (13), play volleyball and his son, Ethan (9), play baseball and soccer.
Coaching Philosophy: Early in my coaching career, I came across ‘The Definite Dozen’ by Pat Summitt, longtime coach of Tennessee women’s basketball. While I find all 12 principles to apply, three of them form the core of my approach to coaching: 1) respect yourself and others; 2) don’t just work hard, work smart; 3) put the team before yourself. With these principles as a foundation, I strive to create an atmosphere in both practices and matches where players learn to work together as a team while simultaneously elevating their volleyball IQ.
Best Volleyball Moment: Can I have two? As a player, winning the Silver Bracket in Men’s ‘A’ at the 1993 USAV Nationals in Memphis, TN (my first year playing USAV as an ‘adult’). As a coach, leading Hood College to its first-ever regular-season conference title in 2000.
My Life in Sports: Growing up, I played a variety of team sports–baseball, soccer, basketball–but something ‘clicked’ when I first encountered volleyball in 1987 while in high school. Ever since, volleyball has been an integral part of my life: as a player on my high school team, college club team, then on different USAV teams until 2007; as a coach at the college-level for almost 10 years as well as coaching & directing junior clubs; as an instructor, teaching volleyball classes at the University of Maryland; now, as a parent, passing on the love of the game to my daughter.
When I’m Not Coaching Volleyball…I’m probably driving my son (baseball/soccer) or daughter (volleyball) to practice. When not serving as chauffeur, I enjoy cooking, golf, and hanging out with family and friends.
Favorite subject in school: Statistics (no, really!)
Last Book I Read: Buy-ology: Truth and Lies About Why We Buy by Martin Lindstrom
Favorite Movie: Ice Age
Person I’d Like to Have Dinner With: my Dad
Something You Probably Don’t Know About Me: I’m a die-hard Boston sports fan (and grew up outside Boston)