USC hires Sato, Hollenbeck as assistant coaches

A three-time assistant coach with U.S. Olympic teams and the 2015 Division III National Coach of the Year will join the USC coaching staff.

USC coach Jeff Nygaard announced earlier this week that he hired Gary Sato and Todd Hollenbeck to be his assistant coaches for the upcoming season.

Sato served as an assistant coach for the U.S. Men’s National Team in three Olympics and helped guide the team to the gold medal in 1988 and the bronze medal in 1992. He most recently served as the head coach for the Japan Men’s National Team.


Hollenbeck spent the last five seasons as the head coach at UC Santa Cruz and had his program ranked in the top 10 of the national coaches poll each season. In addition, Hollenbeck was named the National Coach of the Year as the Banana Slugs advanced to the NCAA Tournament quarterfinals last season.

“I am thrilled to welcome Gary and Todd to the staff and I’m excited to work with them,” Nygaard said in a statement. “We share a like-minded vision of the future of our program. They are great additions to the Trojan volleyball heritage.”

This will be Nygaard’s first season as the USC head coach.

The former UCLA All-American and USC assistant coach was promoted earlier this off-season after the athletics department did not renew the contract of former USC head coach Bill Ferguson.

The Trojans finished last season in fourth place in the MPSF and advanced to the conference tournament semifinals. Among the starters returning for USC next season includes Freshmen All-MPSF outside attacker Larry Tuileta and middle attacker and U.S. Men’s Junior National team member Andy Benesh.