LEXINGTON, Ky. – The American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) announced its 2018 Thirty Under 30 Awards on Thursday (April 5), naming Florida State assistant coach Jordana Price as one of the 30 recipients of the annual award.
Price’s dedication to volleyball and her successful eight-year career as an assistant coach made her a top candidate for the award. The Coaches Association looks for candidates who not only have had a successful career as a coach, but who also display a desire to give back to the volleyball community.
“This award is an extreme honor for me and I am very grateful to be recognized among the many incredibly talented and successful coaches on this list and throughout the country,” Price said. “Volleyball as a sport has helped mold me into the person and coach I am today, and to be honored as one of the top 30 coaches under 30 this past year is a major blessing and privilege.”
Price has given back to the volleyball community in a number of ways, as she has worked alongside USA Volleyball, hosted charity volleyball clinics in her home town of Mountain Home, Idaho, and has helped a number of student-athletes transition into playing volleyball at the collegiate level.
The AVCA’s Thirty Under 30 award was created in 2009 to honor up-and-coming coaching talent at all levels of the sport. To qualify for the award, nominees had to be younger than 30 years old in 2017. The 144 total nominations broke the program record.
“Each year these selections get tougher and tougher as our sport is blessed with so many remarkable young coaches.” said AVCA Executive Director Kathy DeBoer. “They know they are the future of the sport and of the AVCA, and I’m impressed with their willingness to give of themselves and their desire to lead.”
Of the thirty recipients, 11 are NCAA Division I women’s coaches, five in high school/club and NCAA Division III, three in NCAA Division II, two from the NAIA and NCAA Division I-II men, and one from NCAA Division I Beach and Two-Year College Beach programs.
Price returned to Florida State prior to the 2017-18 season. Where she helped train two of the most decorated athletes FSU volleyball has ever seen – Milica Kubura and Taryn Knuth. As a successful middle blocker in her career, Price helped train a class of freshmen middle blockers in 2017 and formed them into one of the highest-performing position players in the country. Knuth was named the ACC Freshman of the Year and the AVCA East Region Freshman of the Year after setting the record among all freshmen at FSU for solo blocks (22), total blocks (162) and blocks per set (1.49). Her 1.49 blocks per set ranked 11th nationally and led the ACC, while her 162 total blocks ranked 17th nationally.
As a two-year assistant coach for the South Alabama Jaguars prior to her return to her alma mater, Price led the team to its best Sun Belt finish (T-2nd in East Division) in program history and its best start (7-1) since the 1980 season. Price coached Mechelle Danielle, a second team All-Sun Belt honoree, and two players she helped recruit and train received some of the highest honors in the school’s history – Kelley Harman was the first Jaguar ever selected to the AVCA All-Region Team and was a First Team All-Sun Belt Selection, while Kristina Alabastro was selected as Second Team All-Conference.
Price started as a graduate assistant at Valdosta State while playing professionally before stepping into the role of volunteer assistant. She helped the Blaze to a 25-8 record, an NCAA D-II South Regional second round appearance and its first ever Gulf South Conference title.
A three-year member of the FSU volleyball team, Price played for Coach Poole and helped the Seminoles to their first-ever trip to the Elite Eight in 2009 after winning the ACC Championship. She led the league in blocks (1.31 per set) and ranked fourth in hitting percentage (.335) which was second on the team.
Price hopes that her experience learning from the coaches she has worked for lead her to a head coach position in the future – preferably at her alma mater, Florida State.
“I am extremely grateful to Coach Poole and Coach Hulsmeyer for mentoring me and giving me this tremendous opportunity to be a part of our incredible staff,” Price said.
Looking ahead to her near future, Price is focused on continuing to mentor the athletes she coaches and helping Florida State compete for an ACC Championship every year.
“I truly appreciate the AVCA and the committees that work exceptionally hard day in and day out to help volleyball as a sport, and our coaches succeed in every way,” Price said. “I graciously thank [them] for this award.”
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