CLUB DIRECTOR | NATIONAL TEAM COACH
22 YEARS COACHING EXPERIENCE
PLAYED FOR UTAH STATE UNIVERSITY
HOME LIFE: Denae grew up in Seattle, Washington. She is the youngest of five (2 brothers and 2 sisters) and admits to being the spoiled youngest child. She graduated high school and moved to Logan on a full-ride volleyball scholarship to USU. There she met her future husband, David, at an activity to build the ASL (American Sign Language) Club's Homecoming float her junior year of college. They were married 2 weeks after her senior season of playing and have enjoyed almost 20 years of marriage. Together they love to travel, watch TV, and confuse people by signing to each other when it's least expected. Denae and David have 5 awesome (although admittedly crazy) kids: Emily 16, Rachel 14, Noah 12, Eli 9, and Molly 7. They have lived in Hyrum for the past 10 years and love the country living.
EDUCATION: Denae graduated Magna Cum Laude from Utah State University with a Bachelors in Elementary Education. She taught 5th grade for 3 years at Nibley Elementary prior to starting her family. After a 16 years break, she is again back at Nibley Elementary teaching 4th grade.
VOLLEYBALL CAREER: Denae started playing volleyball at a young age with her older sisters who both played in high school. Even though she made her 7th and 8th grade middle school teams, she couldn't serve overhand until the summer before her freshman year of high school! Denae started playing club after her 9th grade season, and really started to grow into the sport. Volleyball became her only sports passion, and she was lucky enough to receive a full-ride scholarship to play volleyball at USU. Her first year she was able to make an immediate difference in the program, being honored as the Big West Freshman of the Year, 1st team all Big West, and was recognized as a member of Volleyball Magazines 6 person NCAA All-Freshman Team. She also finished the season ranked 17th in the nation with a .375 hitting percentage. She continued her efforts at USU for the next three years, making 1st team all Big West again as a junior and senior and leading the Aggies to the NCAA tournament for the first time in school history.
COACHING CAREER: Denae started coaching for Mountain West Volleyball during her junior year of college. Three years later, she became the Owner/Director at Mountain West and enjoyed that role for 11 seasons. She coached many different teams during that time, but has especially loved working with the 13/14 age groups. This season she will be starting her 15th year as a Club Director.
WHY I COACH: "I coach volleyball because I love to be able to give back to a sport that has meant so much to me over the years. Volleyball has quite literally made me into the person I am today, and I yearn to give those same types of experiences to the youth I work with. I love the opportunity I have to be a positive influence in the lives of our players and adore the relationships I get to make with my co-workers, parents, and players. One of my favorite things is to have 'my' players come back to coach with me and I have enjoyed each of those relationships. I appreciate the chance I have had during the past 20 plus years to make a difference in the volleyball community here in Cache Valley and will continue to strive to grow the sport of volleyball."
VOLLEYBALL IDOL: Misty May (I had a chance to play against Misty when she was a Junior/Senior at Long Beach State. Those are fun memories!)
FAVORITE QUOTE: “A trophy carries dust. Memories last forever." – Mary Lou Retton