Gonzaga University women's volleyball head coach Dave Gantt announced the promotion of Allen Allen to assistant coach on Jan. 5, 2010. Allen, who served as a volunteer assistant coach for the 2009 season, fills the space vacated by Brynn Murphy, who left to pursue a playing career overseas.
Allen was a four-year member of the University of Hawaii men's volleyball program from 1986-89. While a player at Hawaii the Warriors compiled a 70-28 overall record and a 53-23 record in conference. Allen was named a first team All-American in 1988 and 1989 and a second team All-American selection in 1987. He earned All-California Intercollegiate Volleyball Association (CIVA) honorable mention as a freshman, and All-Western Intercollegiate Volleyball Association (WIVA) first-team as a sophomore, junior and senior. He still holds the career records for solo blocks (112), is second in kill attempts (3,151) and digs (739) and third in kills (1,483).
Allen went on to play professionally in the FIVB Beach Volleyball Series, the European Professional Volleyball League and the Bud-Light Professional Volleyball League. Allen officially retired from professional competition in 1998. Allen's coaching career started in 1993 when he was an assistant coach with his alma mater for one year. Two years later in 1995, Allen became the head coach for the Samoan men's and women's National Team. He went on to become the head women's volleyball coach at Alliant University in San Diego, Calif., before founding the Allen Allen Club Volleyball in 2004. Allen helmed Alliant for three seasons (2003-2005).
"We are very fortunate to be in a position to hire someone of Al's character and experience," stated Gantt. "His volunteer work with the program this fall was indicative of his passion for the game and I know everyone around the program is excited that his involvement will expand and continue."
Allen earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in history from Hawaii in 1996 and his special education teaching credential from California State San Marcos in 2001. Allen is married to Melissa, who is the girl's varsity head coach at Mount Spokane High School. The Allen's are proud parents of three children; Justin (20), Tiare (7), and Teila (5).
Why did you choose Gonzaga to work at?
The Gods/fate chose Gonzaga for me.
Favorite Zag volleyball moment?
The look on our players faces when we beat Santa Clara in five on the Broncos home court and the look on our players faces and fans when we beat San Francisco in five at the Martin Centre.
If you could have dinner with anybody, dead or alive, who would it be?
Edmond Dantes – Count of Monte Cristo.
Favorite thing about the Martin Centre?
The invisible rock that trips the players and staff on occasion. I got me good last spring when I fell but I played it off incredibly.
My best off the court moment at Gonzaga has been…
Manny the bus driver always making the wrong turn and Coach Gantt getting frustrating.
When I was a kid, I wanted to…
Play for the Oakland Raiders.
To me, being a Bulldog means…
Relentless on defense, intelligent on offense. ‘Ground and Pound’ mentality.
My secret addiction is…
Oatmeal and rockstar energy drinks
The reality TV show I want to be on is…
Dancing with the Stars.
What my ultimate goal for the Gonzaga volleyball program is…
Final Four every year. How do we achieve this? Best blocking and best digging team in the country!