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Hugh McCutcheon

Hugh McCutcheon

American volleyball player-coach
The basics
Quick Facts
Intro American volleyball player-coach
Countries New Zealand United States of America
Occupations Volleyball player
Gender male
Birth 13 October 1969 (Christchurch, Canterbury Region, New Zealand)
Education Brigham Young University
The details

Hugh Donald McCutcheon MNZM (born 13 October 1969), a native of Christchurch, New Zealand, is the former head coach of the US men's national volleyball team, the former head coach of the US women's national volleyball team, and the current head coach of the University of Minnesota's women's volleyball team.

McCutcheon was a New Zealand national team volleyball player. He played on the New Zealand junior and senior national teams from 1988-90 before coming to the United States and lettered in volleyball and field hockey at Shirley Boys' High School. He was also a member of New Zealand’s national team in 1996 and represented his country on the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour in 1997.


McCutcheon played for Brigham Young University from 1991-1993 after transferring from the University of Canterbury in New Zealand.

  • 1991 - Played in 40 games, had 87 kills while averaging 2.2 per game, had 47 digs and 39 total blocks, added six assists and three aces.
  • 1992 - Earned Academic All-Conference honors from the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation. Played in 72 games ... was third on the team in kills with 218 while averaging 3.0 per game, hit .312 on the season, placed fourth on the team in digs with 113, added 48 blocks and 17 aces, had 19 kills and hit .485 in a three-game match against UC Santa Barbara and had a season high 21 kills against Ball State.
  • 1993 - Earned honorable mention All-America honors as a senior. Led the Cougars in kills with 476 and was 13th in the nation with a 5.53 per game average, hit .337 on the season, was third on the team with 130 digs and 107 blocks and had 28 assists and 19 aces. Had 39 kills in a match against the University of Hawaii.

After receiving his bachelor’s degree in physical education from BYU in 1993, McCutcheon played professionally for two years in Finland and Japan before returning to BYU to complete his master’s degree in exercise science in 1998. In 1999, McCutcheon received an MBA from BYU’s Marriott School of Management.

Coaching history

McCutcheon was the top assistant coach and recruiter under head coach Carl McGown for BYU from 1995-2001. During that time, the Cougars posted a record of 138-44 and captured two NCAA men’s volleyball championships (1999 and 2001).

After leaving BYU, McCutcheon was the head coach of the Vienna Hotvolleys in Austria for two seasons. In his first season there, the Hotvolleys won the 2001-02 Inter-Liga, Austrian Cup and Austrian League championships, and he had the opportunity to work with USA national team players Rich Lambourne, Dave McKienzie, Adam Naeve, Reid Priddy and Brandon Taliaferro. He also coached the first Austrian team to ever beat an Italian A1 opponent.

McCutcheon also served as a volunteer assistant coach for the men’s national team, helping out during the 2001 Volleyball World League, the 2002 World Championships and on five international tours. He has also served as the head coach of the USA Boys Youth National Team in 2000 and 2001. He joined USA Volleyball as a full-time assistant coach for the men’s national team program in April 2003.

On 3 February 2005, USA Volleyball introduced McCutcheon as the new head coach of the USA men’s national volleyball team. He took over the position from long-time head coach Doug Beal, who resigned to become the new Chief Executive Officer of USA Volleyball.

On 15 December 2008, it was announced that McCutcheon accepted the head coach position of the U.S. Women's National Team for the 2009-2012 Olympic quadrennial.

On 10 February 2011, McCutcheon was named head coach of the University of Minnesota's volleyball team. He joined the Gophers on August 30, 2012 after fulfilling his obligations with the National Team.

US Men's National Team head coach

The team went 27-6 in McCutcheon's first year as head coach and won five medals in five tournaments. They earned a silver medal at the USOC International Sports Invitational in San Diego, California, gold medals at the America's Cup in Brazil, the FIVB World Championship Qualifying Tournament in Puerto Rico and the NORCECA Continental Championship in Canada and another silver medal at the FIVB World Grand Champions Cup in Japan.

The squad posted wins over the 2004 Olympic gold and silver medalists during the year (Brazil and Italy, respectively), registered the highest winning percentage of any men’s national team since 1988 (.818) and recorded the most wins by a men’s team since 2000 (27). The Americans finished the year by winning 18 of their last 19 matches, including 14-straight at one point and ranked fifth in the world.

In 2008, the US men's national team led by McCutcheon won the Volleyball World League. He led the USA men's volleyball team to the gold medal at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing for the first time since 1988, defeating gold-medal favorite Brazil in four sets. This is the third gold medal overall for the men's volleyball team with the first being won in 1984.

US Women's National Team head coach

At the 2012 Olympics, the USA Women's Team advanced to the gold medal game. However, they lost to Brazil in four sets.

Personal life

On 9 August 2008, the day after the opening ceremony of the Beijing Summer Olympics, the parents of McCutcheon's wife, former Olympian Elisabeth Bachman, were attacked at Drum Tower. His father-in-law Todd Bachman was killed and his mother-in-law Barbara Bachman was seriously injured. A 47-year-old Chinese man named Tang Yongming assaulted them at the Drum Tower eight kilometres from the main Olympic site before leaping to his death from the 40-metre high balcony. McCutcheon was away from the team for 3 matches during the tournament, before returning to lead the team to the gold medal.

Individual awards and honours

  • 2007 NORCECA Men's Championship "Best Coach"
  • 2011 NORCECA Women's Championship "Eugenio Laffita Award"
  • 2015 Big Ten Coach of the Year
  • 2015 AVCA Coach of the Year

In the 2016 Queen's Birthday Honours, McCutcheon was appointed a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to volleyball.

The contents of this page are sourced from Wikipedia article. The contents are available under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license.
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