For the first time since 1984, more than a decade before anyone currently on the team was born, Ohio State will have a new men's volleyball coach.
Pete Hanson, a three-time national champion and 18-time conference champion, announced his retirement on April 18, and Kevin Burch was named his successor on Tuesday.
The past three seasons, Burch was an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator for the Buckeyes. He graduated from Ohio State in 2011 and began his career as a volunteer assistant coach with the program from 2009 to 2011.
|2009-11||Ohio State men's volleyball||Volunteer Assistant Coach|
|2010||Columbus State women's volleyball||Head Coach|
|2012||Springfield men’s volleyball||Assistant Coach|
|2013||UC Irvine men’s volleyball||Assistant Coach|
|2014||Springfield men’s volleyball||Assistant Coach|
|2014||Penn State women’s volleyball||Director of Operations|
|2016-19||Ohio State men's volleyball||Assistant Coach & Recruiting Coordinator|
|2020-||Ohio State men's volleyball||Head Coach|
Burch becomes the ninth head coach in program history.
“Thank you to Gene Smith, Janine Oman and the entire Ohio State athletics leadership council for granting me the privilege of guiding our men’s volleyball program,” Burch said in a statement. “I’m honored and grateful to be presented this responsibility at an institution that is dear to my heart. The Ohio State University and this men’s volleyball team are special. The staunch support of our athletics administration, the history of this program’s success, and recent completion of the Covelli Center combine to make this truly the best program in the country.”
In between his stints at Ohio State, Burch worked as an assistant coach a Springfield and UC Irvine, and he was the director of operations for Penn State. He also was Columbus State's head coach in 2010.
Burch has won seven national championships as a coach. He was on the staff for all of Hanson's titles – in 2011, 2016 and 2017.
“Kevin Burch has constructed a blueprint for the men’s volleyball program built on the same pillars and goals utilized as the foundation to our strategic plan,” deputy athletic director Janine Oman said in a statement. “He has demonstrated a commitment to our eight stated values as an athletics & business advancement department – integrity, education, people, excellence, respect, innovation, community and tradition.”
While working under Hanson the past three years, Burch landed a number of high-level recruits, including eight AVCA high school All-Americans and two senior national team members.
“Guidance from exceptional mentors has been integral in my development as a leader,” Burch said in a statement. “I would not be the coach, husband, son or man I am today without the influence of Coach Hanson. He has touched the lives of hundreds associated with OSU men’s volleyball, and none more than mine. My gratitude for him is boundless. I look forward to continuing his tradition of molding the young men currently in the program and further connecting with our many great alumni. I’d also like to thank my wife, Kelly, for her unwavering support. She pushes me to be better every single day and has had my back every step of the way.”