COLUMBUS, Ohio – Kevin Burch, who has been a part of seven national championship coaching staffs since 2011, is taking the reins of Ohio State men’s volleyball. He has been selected as the ninth head coach in program history, announced Tuesday (May 21) by the OSU Department of Athletics.
“Kevin Burch has constructed a blueprint for the men’s volleyball program built on the same pillars and goals utilized as the foundation to our strategic plan,” Janine Oman, Deputy Director of Athletics and men’s volleyball program administrator, said. “He has demonstrated a commitment to our eight stated values as an athletics & business advancement department – integrity, education, people, excellence, respect, innovation, community and tradition.”
“Thank you to Gene Smith, Janine Oman and the entire Ohio State athletics leadership council for granting me the privilege of guiding our men’s volleyball program,” Burch said. “I’m honored and grateful to be presented this responsibility at an institution that is dear to my heart.
“The Ohio State University and this men’s volleyball team are special. The staunch support of our athletics administration, the history of this program’s success, and recent completion of the Covelli Center combine to make this truly the best program in the country.”
Burch is a graduate of Ohio State (sports and leisure studies, 2011) and returned to Columbus as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator prior to the 2015-16 academic year. He has been on staff for all three Ohio State national championships, starting with his volunteer assistant coach role for the 2011 title-clinching season and followed by back-to-back crowns in his first two campaigns as a full-time assistant in 2016 and 2017. That first year sparked an incredible run which included seven consecutive seasons ending under the confetti for Burch as a national champion.
“Kevin has been diligently preparing for this opportunity since 2008 when he first became a Buckeye,” Oman said. “He has showcased innovation, integration and adaptability over the past decade-plus while learning essential steps for success under a group of established leaders who are respected and admired throughout the volleyball community. Kevin has a clear and detailed view of Ohio State men’s volleyball’s past, present and future.”
In 14 years of collegiate coaching experience, Burch has been mentored by some of the game’s elite managers, including Ohio State Hall of Famer Pete Hanson, Russ Rose (Penn State women’s volleyball) and Charlie Sullivan (Springfield men’s volleyball). The head coaches Burch has been groomed by have combined to win 20 national titles and been named national coach of the year 12 times.
“Guidance from exceptional mentors has been integral in my development as a leader,” Burch said. “I would not be the coach, husband, son or man I am today without the influence of Coach Hanson. He has touched the lives of hundreds associated with OSU men’s volleyball, and none more than mine. My gratitude for him is boundless. I look forward to continuing his tradition of molding the young men currently in the program and further connecting with our many great alumni.
“I’d also like to thank my wife, Kelly, for her unwavering support. She pushes me to be better every single day and has had my back every step of the way.”
The California native has ‘Buckeye blood’ as his initial journey to Columbus was inspired by his late grandfather, Darrell Burch, a three-time Ohio State graduate who earned bachelor’s, master’s and PhD degrees from the University in 1951, ’53 and ’59.
Burch has also been involved with USA Volleyball since 2011, most recently serving as the assistant coach and tech coordinator for the Boys U19 team since July 2015. He’s traveled internationally for the U19 World Championships and NORCECA qualifiers during that stretch.
A 2017 recipient of the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) ’30 under 30’ Award, Burch’s coaching accolades have been accompanied by his prime recruiting prowess. As the Ohio State recruiting coordinator, he secured commitments from eight AVCA High School All-Americans, three USA U19 athletes and a pair of a senior national team players.
Burch’s holistic vision of the Ohio State men’s volleyball program spreads much further than the court, encompassing the pursuit of excellence in academics, community service, alumni relations, development and more. Sixty-two members of the men’s volleyball team have earned OSU Scholar-Athlete recognition over the past four seasons with Burch on staff. He collaborated with the Ohio State development team as well to initiate and fundraise the Hanson Legacy program endowment fund, named after legendary Buckeye head coach Pete Hanson. Burch also developed an alumni job and internship database to assist in facilitating job placement for current student-athletes.
In his playing days, Burch captained the 2008 Orange Coast College team to the state finals and played libero as a freshman before making the full transition into coaching and enrolling at Ohio State. While handling his volunteer coach role at Ohio State, he gained management experience as the Columbus State Community College head coach in 2010-11. Burch guided the Cougars to a 26-9 record, regional semifinals appearance and implemented a study program which rose the team GPA from sub-2.6 to over a 3.0 in less than a year.
Kevin Burch Collegiate Coaching Timeline
|2020-||Ohio State University||Head Coach|
|2016-19||Ohio State University||Assistant Coach & Recruiting Coordinator|
|2014||Penn State University||Director of Operations (women's volleyball)|
|2014||Springfield College||Assistant Coach|
|2013||University of California, Irvine||Assistant Coach|
|2012||Springfield College||Assistant Coach|
|2009-11||Ohio State University||Volunteer Assistant Coach|
|2010||Columbus State Community College||Head Coach (women's volleyball)|