TCU Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Chris Del Conte announced the hiring of Jill Kramer as Director of Volleyball on December 29, 2014. Kramer becomes the third head coach in the history of the volleyball program.
Kramer, the first scholarship volleyball student-athlete in the history of TCU who still holds the school records in kills, kills per set and total attacks, returns as a Horned Frog after serving as head coach at West Virginia the past five seasons.
"We're very excited to welcome home Jill Kramer," Del Conte said. "Jill is a big part of our volleyball history. From being a student-athlete in the inaugural season of our program and later a member of our first volleyball graduating class, Jill is a true Horned Frog who bleeds purple.
"Jill is simply a perfect fit for us. We're very excited to have her once again a part of the TCU and Fort Worth communities. With Jill's leadership, the future is bright for TCU volleyball."
Kramer, formerly Jill Pape, was a four-year letterwinner and team captain at TCU from 1996-99. Her 1999 senior class was TCU's first four-year group of volleyball student-athletes.
"I am humbled and honored that Chancellor (Victor) Boschini, Chris Del Conte, and the rest of the TCU family have entrusted me with the direction of the TCU Volleyball program, Kramer said. "When I graduated from TCU 14 years ago, I don't think I could've have written this script any better. The growth that TCU has experienced since my time on campus is tremendous and it's been fun to watch all of the progress from a distance.
"I am most excited to get to know the players and begin to work with them. Naturally, I have a very clear vision for the growth of the program, on the court, in the classroom, and in the community. I'm very happy to be coming home!"
Kramer was named West Virginia's third volleyball coach in 2010, a day before the start of fall training camp and guided the Mountaineers to new heights in her five seasons at the helm.
West Virginia recently finished one of its most successful seasons in 2014 with a program-high RPI of 70 and also garnering its first All-Americans in program history when Jordan Anderson and Nikki Attea earned the AVCA All-America Honorable Mention honors. Anderson also became the first player in the history of the program to be named to the All-Big 12 First Team.
In 2013, Kramer led her team to its best start in program history (10-0), its first Big 12 Conference victory and its first 20-win season in more than two decades. She also saw her squad finish No. 74 in the RPI - 118 spots higher than 2012 - the eighth-best improvement in the country and the largest among major conference schools. In the Mountaineers' season finale, Kramer recorded her 50th career win in a three-set sweep of Buffalo.
Kramer led WVU into the Big 12 Conference in 2012, when the Big 12 was coming off a 2011 season rated as the nation's best conference according to RPI. Before facing one of the toughest conference schedules in program history where the team played a record eight matches against ranked opponents, Kramer coached a pair of freshmen to the school's first Big 12 honors in Attea and Hannah Sackett.
In her first two seasons at WVU, Kramer hit the ground running as the Mountaineers began their 2010 season with their best start since 1987, posting a 4-0 record at the WVU Classic. The Mountaineers also defeated Marshall for the first time since 2001 with a dominating 3-0 win in the WVU Coliseum. The Mountaineers also shut down Pitt, 3-2, in 2010 and 2011 for the second and third wins in program history over the Panthers and the first wins in more than 40 years. In her inaugural year, the Mountaineers closed out the season just one match shy of a Big East Tournament appearance, finishing 15-15.
Kramer's influence on defensive play was seen when WVU was ranked as high as No. 1 in the Big East and nationally for digs per set in 2010 and 2011. In 2011, Kramer coached first-time libero Serinna Russo to a final ranking of No. 7 in the nation and No. 2 in the Big East ranking in digs per set.
Since becoming a head coach in 2010, Kramer has put a great emphasis on the improvement of academics. Kramer's teams have slowly risen to her expectations with WVU being honored with the AVCA Team Academic Award in July 2013 - the first in program history. The award honors collegiate teams that display excellence in the classroom during the school year by maintaining at least a 3.30 cumulative team GPA on a 4.0 scale.
Kramer came to West Virginia after spending two seasons as an assistant at Virginia, where she made an immediate impact on the Cavaliers' volleyball program. In her first season, where she coordinated all recruiting efforts, Kramer helped head coach Lee Maes bring the program its first-ever nationally ranked recruiting class, posting a No. 15 ranking by PrepVolleyball.com. She followed that up in her second year with a class that was tabbed No. 9 by PrepVolleyball.com.
Prior to her stint at Virginia, Kramer spent two seasons (2006-07) as an assistant at Alabama, helping the Crimson Tide reach the NCAA tournament in consecutive years. At Alabama, she was involved in all aspects of the program, including on-court training, opponent scouting and recruiting, while tutoring two time All-American Crystal Hudson. In her second season with the Crimson Tide, Kramer served as the recruiting coordinator, bringing in the first ranked recruiting class in Tide volleyball history, a No. 27 ranking by PrepVolleyball.com.
Kramer began her collegiate coaching career as an assistant at UTSA from 2003-05. UTSA advanced to the Southland Conference tournament in each of her three seasons, including a championship berth in 2005.
While coaching at UTSA, Kramer also was the co-director for the Alamo Volleyball Club, coaching the 17-and-under team. She oversaw all player and coach development while Alamo grew to 26 teams and over 250 athletes. During her time there, 17 teams qualified for the Junior Olympics, while six of those teams earned medals and 12 players earned All-America awards.
Her coaching career began in 1998 as an assistant for the 16-and-under national team of the Metroplex Volleyball Club, currently Texas Advantage, in Fort Worth.
Kramer also has been involved with USA Volleyball for the past eight years. Kramer's teams have posted a 31-5 record during her time with USA Volleyball and from 2007-13, she coached at the USA Women's National team tryouts in Colorado Springs, Colo.
Kramer spent the summer of 2011 as an assistant coach for the USA Women's Junior National Team, which competed in the FIVB Women's Junior National World Championships in Lima, Peru. The team posted a 4-4 record and came in fourth in the competition.
A native of San Antonio, Kramer earned a bachelor of business administration degree in marketing from TCU in 2000 and is currently completing USA CAP Level I and II certification. She is married to Willem Kramer of The Netherlands.
TCU Director of Volleyball Jill Kramer announced on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016 that she has tabbed Hector Gutierrez to be the head coach for the TCU beach volleyball program.
Prior to coming to Fort Worth, Gutierrez was an assistant coach for the beach volleyball program at Florida State where he helped lead the team to the No. 1 overall seed in the first-ever NCAA Championship, while also helping guide the team to a runner-up finish in the tournament. During the 2015-16 season, the Seminoles won the CCSA Championship, produced two AVCA All-Americans, garnered four CCSA All-Conference selections and the CCSA Pair of the Year.
Gutierrez comes to TCU with a wealth of international experience both as an indoor and beach volleyball coach. Prior to his position at Florida State, Gutierrez spent 10 months as a head coach on the USA beach volleyball national team. Before joining USA beach volleyball, Gutierrez served as head coach on the Slovakia (2014) Beach Volleyball national women’s team and an assistant coach on the German Beach Volleyball national team from 2012 to 2013. He also worked with the Swiss Beach Volleyball national team for one year (2011-12).
With the U.S. squad, Gutierrez led the team of Brittany Hochevar and Heather McGuire to a ninth place showing at the Prague Open in the Czech Republic. He then led Hochevar and teammate Jennifer Fopma to a ninth place finish at the Long Beach Grand Slam in California.
As coach of the Slovakian Beach Volleyball team, Gutierrez led Dominika Nestracova and Natalia Dubovcova to a season-best third place finish at the Stavanger Grand Slam in Norway. The duo went on to post four top 10 finishes in 2014 en route to a final Federation Internationale De Volleyball (FIVB) ranking of 13th.
During his stint as an assistant with the German National Team, Gutierrez helped the women’s team of Karla Borger and Britta Buthe to a second place finish at the 2012 World Championships in Stare Jablonki, Poland. That squad finished the 2012-13 season ranked 11th in the FIVB world rankings.
Gutierrez also spent time as a second assistant coach for women’s indoor teams in Turkey (Diyarbakir V.C. – 2011) and Azerbaijan (Baki BAKU V.C. – 2012) and an assistant coach with MTV Stuttgart of the Women’s Bundesliga I in Germany. He also served as head coach of the Volero Zurich men’s team of the NLB League for one season.
His coaching background also includes stints with the Sunshine Volleyball Club in Santa Monica, Calif., and as an assistant coach at Brentwood High School in Los Angeles.
Gutierrez began his professional playing career at the age of 17 playing all throughout Spain. He was a member of C.V Orotava that finished second in the FEV Spanish Volleyball League “Pro 1” in 2004. He also played in the European League, CEV CUP, with C.V Arona in Tenerife, Spain, helping the team to a fifth place finish in the league “Pro 1.”
Born in Lanzarote, Canary Islands, Gutierrez moved to Tenerife with his family when he was eight years old. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Pedagogy from the University of La Laguna, Tenerife. Gutierrez is married to Katie Carter, an All-American volleyball player at UCLA and current professional indoor player.
TCU Director of Volleyball Jill Kramer made her first hire to the indoor volleyball staff with the addition of Brian Wright as assistant coach on January 13, 2014.
Wright comes to TCU after spending the last seven years as a volunteer assistant coach at Texas where he played a pivotal role in the Longhorn program that won the 2012 NCAA Championship, advanced to six NCAA Final Fours, won six Big 12 titles and finished in the top-5 of the final rankings for seven straight seasons.
"Our goal is to build a nationally prominent volleyball program," Kramer said. "Brian was an integral part of the Texas coaching staff for years as they have repeatedly returned to the Final Four and won a national championship. I coached with him over a decade ago in the Lone Star Region High Performance program and from that experience learned that he was someone I would want to bring on to my staff when the opportunity presented itself.
"He is always learning, always growing and has always had a great rapport with his players and colleagues. These reasons, and many more, make him the perfect fit for the culture and the vision we have for TCU Volleyball."
Wright has been a coach at the club level for over 16 years, serving as camp director as well as club director and assistant director for several years. Most recently, he worked for eight seasons with Austin Performance Volleyball after spending eight seasons with AIM Volleyball, one season as assistant coach at Southwestern University and parts of five seasons with The University of Texas women's club team.
"I am extremely excited to join the TCU Volleyball staff," Wright said. "I want to thank Jill and the entire administration for this opportunity. I look forward to getting to know the players and to being in the gym with them soon to get to work."
His club teams have qualified 12 times to the Junior Olympics, winning three national qualifiers. He also worked three summers for the Lone Star Region High Performance program, including serving as head coach for the 2011 Lone Star HP Select team. Wright's 2014 AP 15 PHD team won silver medals at the AAU National Championships and three players were named to the AAU All-American team.
Wright has been an assistant coach in the USA Volleyball Select A1/A2 program and has worked as both assistant and associate head coach for various USA camps and tryouts. Wright most recent coaching stint with USAV was with the Select A1 program at the 2012 and 2014 USA HP Championships and winning a gold medal with the USA Youth Continental team at the 2013 USA HP Championships.
While at Southwestern in 2007, he helped the Pirates reach the second round of the NCAA Division III tournament. During his tenure with the UT club team, he led the squad to three national titles, including the 2007 NIRSA Division 1 national championship.
The UT club team finished 51-0 during the 2006-07 season and went undefeated at 9-0 during the 2007 NIRSA Nationals.
As a player, Wright played four years for The University of Texas men's team. He was named the conference's Most Valuable Player in 2000, when he led Texas to the league championship.
Wright also was the director of the Texas men's volleyball program for two years and competed on the AA level at USAV Open Nationals, where he finished in the Top 10 twice.
Wright earned his bachelor's degree from Texas State in 2010.
TCU Director of Volleyball Jill Kramer completed her staff on Tuesday, June 30 with the hiring of former UCLA student-athlete Trent Kersten as volunteer assistant coach for the indoor volleyball team.
Kersten, a 6-foot-9 middle blocker from Fountain Valley, Calif., will join the Horned Frog program after spending the last four seasons as a Bruin, where he totaled 335 kills, 216 blocks and a .416 hitting percentage in his career.
"Trent made a lasting impression on me from the first time we spoke," Kramer said. "He grew up in the gym with his father Kurt, who was an outstanding coach at Esperanza High School in southern California. You can tell it's in his blood when you talk to him. He's driven, an outspoken learner and thinker and will have a lot to share with our team."
After redshirting his freshman season, Kersten went on to make 59 starts in the 67 matches played in his career at UCLA. Kersten posted a career best in kills (11) and block assists (9) in his redshirt junior season and was ranked among the nation's top 15 in hitting percentage (.387) and blocks per set (1.08). For his efforts, Kersten was tabbed a 2015 All-MPSF Honorable Mention selection.
"I am honored to have been asked to join the staff here at TCU," Kersten said. "I look forward to sharing what I have learned from my collegiate career with the tremendous student athletes of TCU, but I am most excited to have the opportunity to learn from Coach Kramer and the rest of the talented staff. TCU's combination of academics, athletics and community is incredibly special and I look forward to being a part of that continued growth as I begin my collegiate coaching career."
In his first two seasons at UCLA, Kersten played in 44 matches and 150 sets and totaled 217 kills and 137 blocks. He averaged a .435 hitting percentage and ranked No. 34 in the NCAA in blocks per set (0.93) in 2014.
"One of the most unique things Trent can share with our players is that he went through a coaching change as a player at UCLA," Kramer said. "He was recruited by and played for Al Scates, then John Speraw took over the program as Coach Scates retired. The energy and excitement that teams go through during a coaching change is real, and so are the challenges. I think it will be very nice for our players to have some guidance from a member on our staff who can relate to them in that manner, whether they are an incoming freshman, a player transferring in or a returner is going through their first season with our staff."
During his time as a student-athlete, Kersten also worked in the UCLA Recruiting Department during the summer of 2014, while also being a lead coach at UCLA Summer Volleyball Camps for three straight summers.
Kersten also has experience on the club circuit, as he spent one season as an assistant coach at the Rockstar Volleyball Club. Kersten's team finished in the top 16 of the Boys Classic Tournament and helped the team improve their national ranking from No. 36 to No. 25.
Prior to UCLA, Kersten was a three-year varsity letterwinner at Fountain Valley High School, where he was a two-time All-Sunset League selection and a two-year captain for the Barons. Kersten was selected to the 2011 Redondo All-Tournament team and was named MVP for Fountain Valley High in 2011.
Kersten graduated in June 2015 with a bachelor's degree in geography and environmental studies from UCLA.