Trinity Western’s Josephson to Lead Canada’s Senior Men’s Volleyball Team

Volleyball Canada has announced that Trinity Western Men’s Volleyball Head Coach Ben Josephson has been named the newest Head Coach of the Senior Men’s Indoor Volleyball Team. (Photo courtesy of Trinity Western Spartans Athletics)

LANGLEY, B.C. – Volleyball Canada has named Trinity Western men’s volleyball head coach Ben Josephson as the new senior men’s indoor head volleyball coach. Josephson will begin his national team coaching duties in April of 2022.

“A couple weeks ago I was in Disneyland with my family having a great day,” Josephson said. “I received a message from Volleyball Canada High Performance Director, Julien Boucher, asking to jump on a call. We were waiting on the call from Volleyball Canada to find out if I would be the next Head Coach. This is the job I’ve dreamed about my whole career. Excited and nervous I answered the call and was offered the position sitting in a quiet booth in an empty restaurant in Disneyland while A Whole New World played and Mickey Mouse strolled by. The ‘Happiest Place on Earth” got a little happier when I accepted my ‘dream job.’

“When I was hired as the TWU Head Coach it was a dream job to coach my school’s team. There is no other university program I would ever care about as much as I do TWU. Trinity Western has formed me as a man and coach and I will forever have a special place in my heart for TWU.  I pause as I think back on my appointment as Head Coach at TWU, I feel very much the same way about this current appointment as the Head Coach of Team Canada. This is my dream job.  There is no other volleyball team I would ever care about as much as I do Canada. Canada has formed me as a man and will forever have my heart as a proud Canadian. To be great in anything I believe you need to have passion and joy equal to your purpose. The greater the purpose the greater the passion required to be successful. We have seen this play out at TWU over many years. The new adventure of coaching Canada is even more daunting and a greater purpose, coaching our Maple Volleys around the globe. This purpose will require even more passion and joy than ever before, and I could not be more excited to get started.

“I’ve been a Spartan since 1998 (23 years) but I’ve been a Canadian my whole life.  If I have to leave TWU, I’m glad it’s for the ‘Leaf. It’s a dream come true.”

Beginning in April, Spartan Athletics will promote TWU men’s volleyball assistant coaches and former U SPORTS players of the year Ben Ball and Adam Schriemer to the positions of Co-Interim Head Coaches.

Josephson, who lives with his wife, Jen, and young family in Langley, B.C., has guided TWU to five national championship titles, winning in 2011, 2012, 2016, 2017 and 2019, and has qualified for the U SPORTS championship tournament 11 times. Josephson has also led the Spartans to five Canada West championships, winning in 2012, 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2020, which includes TWU’s current run of nine straight appearances in the conference final.

Josephson holds a Bachelor of Human Kinetics degree from Trinity Western, and has three times been named both the Canada West Coach of the Year and U SPORTS Coach of the Year, in 2011-12, 2013-14 and 2019-20.

While serving as head coach at TWU, Josephson has developed approximately 30 athletes that have represented Canada on the international stage. He has been involved with Team Canada at all levels of the current development model and had served as the lead assistant coach for the Canadian Women’s National Team in 2019. Josephson was also an All-Canadian with Trinity Western University, where he played for the Spartans from 1998 -2003.

This past fall, his TWU team represented Canada at the NORCECA Men’s Pan Am Cup winning a silver medal.

Josephson takes over from Canadian Olympian Glenn Hoag, who previously announced he would coach the team until Tokyo 2020.

The men’s team, currently ranked 12th in the world, has qualified for the last two Olympic Games, making it to the quarter-finals in both events, and will look toward qualification for Paris 2024.

The men’s team is based in Gatineau, Quebec.

Ball has been part of the TWU men’s volleyball program for 16 years. As a setter he won two national titles and also won three U SPORTS championships as an assistant coach. Ball was named U SPORTS men’s volleyball Player of the Year in 2011-2012. Schriemer joined the Spartans as a student-athlete in 2013-14 and has been an assistant coach with the men’s program for the past three year. Schriemer won two national titles as a player and has won one as an assistant coach. As a setter for the Spartans Schriemer was named the U SPORTS Player of the Year in 2017-18.

QUOTABLE

Jeff Gamache, TWU Director of Athletics

“I could not be more excited for Ben. As a Canadian coach, the opportunity to coach your National Team is one of the highest honors you dream about.  I know that Ben is up to the challenge. If I had a dollar for every time I had someone ask me over the years how Ben was not in the conversation for the job, I would be able to retire. While Ben might not have coached at the pro level, he has been instrumental in coaching so many young men to pro and Olympic opportunities. There will certainly be plenty of things that Ben has to learn, but he is the consummate learner and innovator. He will thrive. He prepares relentlessly for each season and each match. He has the rare combination of being highly relational and also holding a high, high standard of excellence. That is what has made him so special as a TWU player and coach.

“Thankfully this new venture is not a total surprise to us in Spartan land, as we always believed he had what it takes to coach Canada. As an AD I believe in building leadership from the inside of an organization. I have talked to all our coaches since I got here about succession planning. Ron Pike did that for Ben, Ben has done that with his staff, particularly Ben Ball and Adam Schriemer, who I know will now do everything they can to carry on the deep, deep legacy of Men’s Volleyball at TWU. The recruiting pipeline is well stocked and the coaching staff has seen everything it takes to win and develop strong men of character for the last decade with Ben. Just like Ben did after Ron, Ben Ball and Adam will need to add their own flavor to leading this team, have the humility and wisdom to surround themselves with other coaches of excellence and keep moving this program forward. I am confident they are up to the challenge.

“We will miss Ben dearly.  Thankfully his home base will still be in Langley.  It will no doubt be weird for him to watch from the sidelines, a place he has never been in his Spartan career, but I’m so thankful that all of the Canadian volleyball community will now get to benefit from his knowledge and passion for building strong technical teams of men that know how to love each other and win.  Ben leaves a legacy of helping define what a Spartan is.  We thank Ben for being a Spartan through and through.”

Ben Josephson, TWU Head Coach and Canada Senior Men’s Team Head Coach

On Ben Ball and Adam Schriemer being named interim co-head coaches of the Spartans

“I am so excited to watch Ben and Adam take Spartan Men’s Volleyball into this next era. Both back-to-back U SPORTS champions, All-Canadians, national championship tournament MVPs and national Players of the Year. Their resumes are incredible but what I know to be even more true is the quality of coaches they are, and further still, the quality of men they are. Ben has been our lead assistant for the past 10 years and our ‘decade of success’ has been hugely influenced by Ben’s coaching. Adding Adam to the staff in 2019 just reinforced what he and I had been talking about his whole career as a player at TWU – that he was going to take my job someday and make Spartan Volleyball better than ever. I couldn’t be more excited to watch Ben and Adam stretch their coaching wings and make this unique program even more special. Two legends of the program at the helm combined with the incredible young men we have on our roster has the chance to be the best edition of TWU Volleyball, yet.”

Ben Ball, TWU Assistant Coach

On being named interim head coach

“There are a lot of emotions going on right now. But, we are very excited and just excited for a change and to see what we can do with this group of players and to see how they will respond. We have so much love for this program and these players. It makes us very excited for this opportunity but also very nervous. We want to improve the program from where it is now. We want to carry the torch forward and we are going to work very hard to do that. It comes down to we care a lot about the guys in the locker room and we want to do right by them. So we are going to work really hard for them and to make this program better.”

On Ben Josephson being named senior national team head coach

“I’m super excited for Ben. We think this appointment is very well deserved. He is an incredible coach and a lot of people have seen it for a lot of years at the university level. He is totally ready to go to the next level. I am really excited to watch team Canada play and to see him on the sideline with the pencil behind his ear and just coaching them up. We are looking forward to following the team and cheering them on during their journey to another Olympics.”

Adam Schriemer, TWU Assistant Coach

On being named interim head coach

“I’m really excited to be able to coach at a team that I used to play for. I had a great career here as a player and it has been a great time so far as an assistant coach. I am even more excited now to have a bigger role in the interim coaching position. I am just really excited to continue the rich history that is Spartans men’s volleyball. Every year this program builds to getting better and we are excited to have it continue on that path. We will just keep working hard to be the best team that we can be each year. I’m really excited to take on this new role and responsibility and to keep working on getting better with all the staff and all the players. I’m really looking forward to continue to build on what Ben has done here.”

On Ben Josephson being named Canada’s coach

“I’m so excited for Ben. He is very deserving of this position. We all know how great of a coach he is and how hard working he is. He will do great in this role. I’m super happy for him.”

Julien Boucher, Volleyball Canada’s high performance director (indoor).

“I’m excited to have Ben at the helm of our senior men’s team. He brings with him the winning tradition he instilled at Trinity Western University. He is also very familiar with a lot of our current athletes. We feel he will move our whole program forward and bring us success in the next quadrennial and beyond.”

Courtesy of the Trinity Western Spartans

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