USA Volleyball announced on Wednesday that Nebraska volleyball assistant coach Tyler Hildebrand has accepted a new position with USA Volleyball and will leave the Huskers for his new role at the end of NU’s beach volleyball season. Hildebrand has been hired by USA Volleyball to be the director of coaching for its Beach National Team Program. He will be in charge of directing the senior beach coaches and national teams that attempt to qualify for the Olympic Games. He will also lead in identifying and recruiting athletes with international potential in beach volleyball. The director of coaching position is new within USA Volleyball and is designed to support U.S. Beach National Team athletes and their coaches as they strive to achieve international and Olympic success. Hildebrand came to Nebraska last February and in his first season helped the Huskers win the NCAA Championship and repeat as Big Ten Champions. A Long Beach State alum and former coach of the 49ers, Hildebrand will be returning to his home state with his wife, Kristin (Richards) Hildebrand, and their four-month old son, Rhett. “The 2017 season was an awesome season and one of the reasons why was because of Tyler and Kristin,” Cook said. “They really brought a lot to our team and had a major part in helping us win a Big Ten and a National Championship.
This new position is the only position that would take him away from Nebraska, and even though the timing isn’t great, we know he’ll do a great job with USA Beach Volleyball.” Cook will be searching for a new assistant coach for the second straight season, as Hildebrand and Kayla Banwarth joined the staff last year, replacing Chris Tamas (now head coach at Illinois) and Dani Busboom Kelly (now head coach at Louisville). Hildebrand will coach the Huskers as they begin their beach season on Friday in Arizona and will stay with the team through the duration of the season, which ends on March 23. “Just like a year ago we’re going to go find the best coach we can for Nebraska volleyball,” Cook said. “We loved having Tyler here, but this is a really unique job for him with USA Volleyball and fits what he wants to do and where he wants to go in the coaching profession. When you hire great people, they’re going to have great opportunities, and this is a great opportunity for Tyler and a great fit for him back home.” Hildebrand was an All-America setter at Long Beach State and then spent five years on the coaching staff of the Long Beach State men’s team. Hildebrand is an accomplished beach volleyball coach, as he coached the U.S. beach volleyball duo of Jake Gibb and Casey Patterson at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. He also has coached the pairs of April Ross/Jen Kessy, April Ross/Kerri Walsh Jennings and Emily Day/Summer Ross. Hildebrand also played professionally on the beach as part of the Association of Volleyball Professionals (AVP) from 2006-07. “It is with bittersweet emotions that Kristin and I are leaving this magical place,” Hildebrand said. “We had a magical season, one that we will never forget. Coaching in Devaney is like nothing else in the world of volleyball. We have heavy hearts filled with memories that will never fade. We can’t express enough how grateful we are for being able to be a part of this Husker family. “I want to thank Coach Cook, Pat Logsdon and the University of Nebraska for the opportunity to be a part of this incredible program.
I also want to thank Husker Nation for all the support this year and for welcoming me and my family with open arms. Husker Nation is truly, without question, the best fan base this country has. I want to thank the rest of the staff who supported me and the team throughout this entire year. Finally, I want to thank the Huskers for allowing me to come in and teach them to the best of my abilities. The team was a blessing to coach and showed us all the power of coming together and being with each other, for each other. This program, university and state is lucky to have Coach Cook. I have learned countless things from him, and he showed me as a coach what it takes to be great. I thank him for pushing and mentoring me and making me a much better coach. There will not be a week that goes by the rest of my career that I don’t have coach in my mind wondering what he would do in a certain situation or how he would guide me.”