New coaches fill out roster

The Division of Athletics has rounded out FIU’s coaching staff with the recent hiring of four new head coaches.

Most recently, the university announced the hiring of Trevor Theroulde as the seventh head coach in the 38-year history of the FIU volleyball program. Theroulde has been the school’s top assistant the past four seasons and brings a wealth of collegiate and international experience to the post.

Photo courtesy Samuel Lewis

“Our goal is to be one of the perennial powers in the state of Florida and in the nation. We want to become a staple in the NCAA Tournament year in and year out,” said Theroulde. “I’m excited to get started and to create a new path of success for FIU volleyball, surpassing the strong foundation that has already been established.”

An FIVB (Federation International Volleyball) Level III coaching instructor, Theroulde served as head coach of the Trinidad and Tobago Female Senior National Team from 1995-2002, while also serving as the public relations officer for the Trinidad and Tobago Volleyball Federation. He became the youngest coach ever to be awarded the Caribbean Volleyball Coach of the Year Award in 1997 after leading the country to its first Senior Caribbean Women’s Volleyball Championship, and the country’s highest world ranking in women’s volleyball.

Theroulde attended the University of Leipzig in Germany where he completed a minor in sports scientific methodology for volleyball coaches in 1999. A four-year member of the Dean’s List at Marshall University, Theroulde graduated Cum Laude with a bachelor’s degree in sports marketing and management, and went on to earn a master’s degree in sport management in 2007. He also completed a master’s degree in business administration/marketing from Argosy University and is set to earn a Ph.D. in organizational leadership from Argosy in 2013.

Pitino picked to lead men’s basketball 

Richard Pitino, fresh off his third season with the Louisville Cardinals where he served as the team’s associate head coach, became the seventh head coach in the history of the FIU men’s basketball program when his hiring was announced April 16.

“I’m extremely excited for the opportunity to coach here at FIU,” Pitino said. “After speaking with FIU President Mark Rosenberg and Pete Garcia, I know that we share the same vision of success. I can’t wait to get started. I will pour my heart and soul into this program. FIU and the South Florida community are extremely attractive to student-athletes. I know we have a lot to offer both in the classroom and on the court. The sky is the limit with this university.”

Pitino served as the Cardinals’ associate head coach during the 2011-12 campaign. He spent two years (2007-08 & 2008-09) as an assistant coach for the Cardinals following two seasons with the Florida Gators (2009-10 & 2010-11).

In his three years with the Cardinals, U of L produced a combined 88-25 record and reached the NCAA Elite Eight in both the 2007-08 and 2008-09 seasons as well as the NCAA Final Four during the 2011-12 campaign. His efforts also helped the Cards land a pair of top 15 recruiting classes (’07-’08 & ’08-’09).

Pitino, who is the son of Louisville Head Coach Rick Pitino, earned his bachelor’s degree in history at Providence College in 2005.

Arena hired to bring men’s soccer program back to national prominence

Kenny Arena, a former Major League Soccer player and University of Virginia standout, was hired March 5 as the fifth head coach in the history of the FIU men’s soccer program.

Photo courtesy

“I’m honored to accept the position of head coach of men’s soccer at FIU,” Arena said. “The program has experienced success in the past and has great potential for the future. We won’t rest until we’ve produced a team that FIU and the alumni will be proud of. I look forward to getting started with our current student-athletes and using the rest of the spring season as preparation for next fall.”

Arena spent the past four seasons as an assistant coach for the UCLA Bruins. During his time at UCLA, he helped lead the Bruins to three Pac-12 titles, three NCAA quarterfinal appearances and a 2011 College Cup appearance. With the Bruins, he was responsible for player development and recruiting. Under Arena, the Bruins produced 35 All-Pac 12 selections, two Player of the Year honorees and two Freshman of the Year, as well as 11 MLS draft picks. Prior to his time at UCLA, Arena was an assistant coach at George Mason in 2007 and a volunteer coach for the University of Virginia in 2006.

Arena played three seasons in Major League Soccer, spending 2003 and 2004 with the NY/NJ MetroStars and the 2005 season with DC United. In 2002, Arena was a member of the U.S. U-23 National Team and was also a member of the U.S. U-20 National Team from 2000-2001. He played in the 2001 World Youth Championships in Argentina, scoring a goal against the Ukraine.

Arena’s father, Bruce, is currently the general manager/head coach of the 2011 MLS Champion Los Angeles Galaxy and was the head coach of the U.S. men’s national team from 1998-2006. He coached championship teams with DC United and at the University of Virginia.

Sand volleyball program hires Buck-Crockett

In December 2011 Rita Buck-Crockett was named head coach of FIU’s new women’s sand volleyball program, which will begin competition in Spring 2013. With the addition of this program, the university increases its intercollegiate-sport count to 18.

Buck-Crockett is a former Olympic medalist with more than 30 years of professional experience as both a player and coach. She comes from Tallahassee, Fla., where she owned and operated the North Florida Volleyball Academy, while also coaching the Maclay High School varsity squad.

“I’m very honored and excited to become a part of the FIU Athletics Department as an assistant athletic director and head coach of sand volleyball,” Buck-Crockett said. “I look forward to leading our sand volleyball program to a national championship and helping to get the indoor volleyball program to the next level.”

Before then, Buck-Crockett served as the associate head coach at Florida State University from 2004-06 and as the head coach at the University of Iowa from 1998-2004. Internationally, Buck-Crockett was the head coach of RTV Basel in Switzerland from 1993-97 and served as the Swiss National Team head coach in 1995.

Buck-Crockett enjoyed a successful playing career, representing the United States on the National Volleyball Team during the 1980 and 1984 Olympics, helping her squad to a silver medal during the 1984 Summer Olympics. She was also a world beach champion for the Women’s Professional Volleyball Association in 1989, partnering with Brazil’s Jackie Silva. Silva later went on to win the gold medal in the inaugural women’s beach volleyball tournament at the 1996 Summer Olympics.