Anna Biller Collier Named Sand Volleyball Head Coach
July 14, 2011
Anna Biller Collier, who coached women's beach volleyball teams in a pair of Olympics, has been named the head coach of the new USC women's sand volleyball team, Women of Troy director of women's volleyball Mick Haley announced today.
USC will begin competing in the NCAA sport in the spring of 2012. The athletic department now sponsors 21 sports with the inclusion of sand volleyball and women's lacrosse.
In addition to the hiring of Collier, the USC coaching staff has received new titles. Haley will continue his head coaching duties for the indoor team, adding a title as director of women's volleyball in order to coordinate both programs. Tim Nollan has been promoted to associate head coach for the indoor team while Cookie Stevens has added assistant coaching duties for the sand program to her current position with the indoor team.
"I think we have found the right person in Anna for the start of our sand volleyball program here at USC," said Haley. "We have a coach who has invested over 30 years in the sport and possesses the passion we believe is needed here. We plan on giving her the support needed to be successful right away. We are excited to get the players here in the fall and start training."
"We have made a number of changes with our coaching staff in order to allow our indoor and sand programs to coexist at a very high level. Tim will be able to monitor recruiting for both programs in order to assure a smooth transition while Cookie will be able to assist Anna in creating a competitive sand program immediately."
Said Collier: "I am extremely excited about returning to my alma mater and coaching the first women's sand volleyball team. It feels like home. I thank Mick Haley and the USC administration for the opportunity."
"I am confident we can build one of the signature women's sand volleyball programs in the nation. USC is a pre-eminent university and we have an outstanding volleyball tradition here. Sand volleyball had its genesis on the beaches of Southern California and the sport remains so strong in this area, especially at the juniors level, which should help in our recruiting."
Collier, a USC graduate, led two U.S. teams to fifth place finishes at the Olympics: Holly McPeak and Nancy Reno in the 1996 Atlanta Games and Annette Davis and Jenny Johnson in the 2000 Sydney Games.
She has coached beach volleyball since 1990, most recently working with such standouts as Misty May-Treanor, Kerri Walsh, Nicole Branagh, Rachel Wacholder and Angie Akers.
She coached U26 and U23 A2 U.S. squads at the 2010 Team FISU World University Championships in Turkey. She will coach U26 U.S. squads at the 2011 Team FISU World University Championships in China.
She is currently the chair of the kinesiology and athletics department at Santa Monica (Calif.) Junior College, where she has spent the past 30 years. She began as the women's cross country and track and field coach, winning three California State championships. She is also a member of the faculty, teaching a variety of courses there.
Collier played professionally on the beach for seven seasons between 1978 and 1989, posting 10 Top 10 finishes among her 20 tournament appearance (including a third at the 1979 San Clemente Open and a pair of ninth place finishes at the legendary Manhattan Beach Open in 1987 and 1988).
She attended USC, where as Anna Biller she was on the track and field, volleyball and swimming teams. She earned her degree in physical education from USC in 1977.