The interim tag has been removed and Brad Hudson will continue to pilot the Heat after a strong 2016-17 season.                                -Image credit: Ken Reid/Greystoke Photography

The interim tag has been removed and Brad Hudson will continue to pilot the Heat after a strong 2016-17 season. -Image credit: Ken Reid/Greystoke Photography

Hudson to return as Heat head coach

The interim coach in 2016-17, Brad Hudson led UBCO to its best win total since joining Canada West

After a successful season as interim coach, Brad Hudson has been retained as head coach of the Heat men’s volleyball team at UBC Okanagan.

A former three-time PACWEST coach of the year at Douglas College, Hudson led the Heat to a 9-15 record this past season, the most wins for the program since joining Canada West.

“Over the past season Brad has done a great job with the team,” said Rob Johnson, Director of Athletics & Recreation. “His technical knowledge of the game, his ability to teach and his calm, thoughtful approach have all been noted by our student athletes…even though he was in an interim position, he has been able to recruit a strong incoming class.”

“We are fortunate to have a coach of his ability and reputation join our program and I look forward to working with him as he continues to build the program.”

Hudson was brought on in July of 2016 for a one-year interim position. With no time to recruit or get new players into UBC Okanagan, and with the graduation of some key student athletes, he was able to make impressive strides with the team. The Heat consistently improved over the course of the season, finishing with four straight wins to set a school record.

“I am honored to have been selected to lead the UBC Okanagan men’s volleyball program,” said Hudson. “It is a tremendous opportunity and I am grateful to Heat Athletic Director, Rob Johnson and the selection committee for their trust.”

Ready to move forward, Hudson relishes the opportunity to relocate his family to the Okanagan and turn his life’s passion of coaching volleyball into a career.

“I welcome the challenges ahead and look forward to sharing this journey with my family, our student athletes, and our Heat community.”

Having already spent a year with Hudson as coach, team captain and senior outside hitter Lars Bornemann was excited to have him be chosen to take over the program.

“Having Brad join the Heat program permanently is awesome for our team,” Bornemann said. “He did a great job last year and has been recruiting hard already to build a competitive and successful team in this league.

‘He has a strong understanding of the game and is very committed. We are extremely happy to welcome him to the Heat family.”

Prior to coming to the Okanagan for the interim position Hudson was well known throughout the volleyball B.C. community with national and provincial coaching excellence awards at the collegiate level and numerous times he was at the helm of one provincial age-group team or another.

Hudson has already inked several players to join his young team that has three Canada West All-Rookie team members in the last two seasons. Devon Cote, Kyle Hinchey, and Eli Risso are all returning for several years and, along with Bornemann and other returners, will provide offense and leadership going forward.

This strong core and the quality of leadership will help coach Hudson navigate the ultra-competitive Canada West conference on U Sports. Of the 51 championship teams in the history of the CIS, 44 have come from Canada West, including 22 of the last 23.