John Speraw, U.S. Men's National Team Head Coach
John Speraw, a two-time Olympic assistant coach for the U.S. Men’s National Volleyball Team, was named the program’s head coach for the Olympic Games quadrennial culminating at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games, on March 25, 2013.
In his first season in 2013, Speraw guided the U.S. Men to a 13-11 record, including the team's first NORCECA Championship title since 2007.
Speraw, 42, also continues as the head men’s volleyball coach at UCLA in a dual role with the U.S. Men’s National Volleyball Team. He accepted the head job at his alma mater in June 2012.
“I am very happy that John has accepted our offer to be the U.S. Men’s head coach,” Beal said. “He’s the right person for the job for this quad at this time. He’s a terrifically talented coach who has had a remarkable level of success at the college level. He knows the current U.S. Men’s player pool very well from his experiences over the last two quads. He has mentored under both Hugh McCutcheon and Alan Knipe.”
Speraw said he felt ready for the challenge of leading two men’s volleyball teams.
“Now that I’ve been at UCLA for almost a full season, it is apparent that (coaching both teams) is doable,” Speraw said. “The support and resources at UCLA are beyond what I have imagined. I have two great assistant coaches (at UCLA) in Brad Keller and Andrea Becker and an amazing staff.
"I am excited to take on this new role with USA Volleyball," Speraw said. "I am honored to have been selected to coach this elite group of talented U.S. players and I appreciate UCLA's support in allowing me to pursue this tremendous opportunity."
"I congratulate John Speraw on his appointment as head coach for the U.S. national team," said Dan Guerrero, UCLA athletic director. "UCLA volleyball has always had strong ties with USA Volleyball and I look forward to John’s success with both programs."
To view Speraw's bio with UCLA, click here.
The U.S. Men’s National Team moved to Anaheim in 2006 and it is now the Official Host City for both the U.S. Men’s and Women’s National Volleyball Teams.
Speraw joined the U.S. Men’s staff in 2007 under then head coach Hugh McCutcheon. In 2008, he traveled with the U.S. Men to the Olympic Games in Beijing where they won the gold medal. After 2008, he worked with the U.S. Men as needed, including a stint as the head coach of a young team that finished fifth at the 2011 Pan American Games.
In 2012, Speraw returned as the assistant coach for the FIVB World League and filled in as head coach for the 2012 World League team for four overseas pool play matches while then head coach Alan Knipe was dealing with a family emergency. The U.S. Men went on to win the silver medal in the FIVB World League Final Round.
Speraw assisted Knipe at the 2012 Olympic Games in London where the U.S. Men placed fifth after winning its preliminary pool with a 4-1 record. The U.S. Men go into 2013 ranked fifth in the world by the FIVB.
Speraw served as head coach of the U.S. Men’s Junior National Team that won the silver medal at the NORCECA Men’s Junior (U-21) Continental Volleyball Championship in 2004 and the team that placed sixth at the 2005 FIVB Junior World Championship. He served as an assistant for the U.S. Boys’ Youth National Team (1998 and 2001), the World University Games Team (1997 and 1999) and the Pan American Games Team (1999, 2007).
As UC Irvine's men’s volleyball coach, Speraw transformed the program into a national power. Under his direction, the Anteaters won three NCAA Men’s National Collegiate Volleyball Championship titles in the last six years and advanced to the NCAA Championship four times, won two Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF) regular season titles and a pair of MPSF Tournament championships.
In 2008, Speraw received a Pillar Award, which showcases outstanding achievement in ethical leadership at the12th Annual Ethics in America Awards. In 2011, he was given the U.S. Olympic Achievement Award, an honor that recognizes the colleges and universities whose coaches and student-athletes have won Olympic medals in the past two Olympic Games.
Prior to UCI, Speraw served in various roles with the UCLA men’s volleyball program for 12 years. He played middle blocker for the Bruins from 1992-95 and was a member of two national championship teams. He was named to the NCAA All-Tournament team in 1995 when he had 11 kills and eight blocks in the championship victory over Penn State.
Speraw became a volunteer assistant coach with the Bruins before assuming a full-time assistant’s position in 1998. He graduated from UCLA in 1995 with a bachelor of science degree in microbiology and molecular genetics.
Speraw is the co-author of the book “Exercise for Your Muscle Type: The Smart Way to Get Fit.”