Patricia Rolf Hired As Head Volleyball Coach
April 9, 2009
GREENVILLE, N.C. – Patricia “Pati” Rolf has been appointed head volleyball coach at East Carolina University, according to an announcement by director of athletics Terry Holland Thursday afternoon.
Rolf brings 21 years of head coaching experience to the Pirate volleyball program, the last seven as head coach at Big East Conference member Marquette University. Her 412 career victories make her one of only 45 active coaches at the NCAA Division I level with at least 400 total wins.
Rolf is the 11th head volleyball coach in ECU history and directly succeeds Chris Rushing, who announced his resignation Jan. 12 after compiling a 68-59 (.535) overall record in four seasons.
“I am extremely excited to join the staff at East Carolina University,” Rolf said. “I want to personally thank Terry Holland and Rosie Thompson for giving me this opportunity. I am looking forward to working with the young ladies who are already a part of the volleyball program at ECU.”
Rolf compiled a 103-101 overall record, including a 49-46 mark in conference play, during her seven-year stay at Marquette. From 2004 to 2006, she led the Golden Eagles to three-straight winning seasons for the first time in program history and guided MU to the Big East Tournament semi-finals in 2006 and the Conference USA Tournament finals in 2004. Her 2004 squad also finished with 22 wins, the highest total in the program’s Division I history.
While at Marquette, Rolf coached numerous All-Big East selections, two America Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) All-Northeast Region Team members and two AVCA Honorable Mention All-America Team performers.
Rolf was not only committed to excellence on the court, but also in the classroom. During her tenure with the Golden Eagles, Rolf coached one Big East Scholar-Athlete Sport Award winner and one McCahill Award winner, which honors the top MU senior athlete from the previous year who has demonstrated the highest performance in scholarship, leadership and athletics.
Rolf also had one athlete, Heidi Pfeiffer, earn the Ralph H. Metcalfe Senior Scholar Athlete-of-the-Year award and the Gold Medal Award from the Klingler College of Arts and Sciences. Pfeiffer become the first student-athlete at Marquette to earn the honor.
“Coach Rolf’s teams have enjoyed quite a bit of success on the floor amassing over 400 career wins, while her student-athletes have been outstanding in the classroom as indicated by an Academic Progress Rating (APR) of 989 and a graduation rate of 100%,” Holland said. “In addition, Coach Rolf has experience coaching with USA Volleyball and comes highly recommended as a skilled teacher and coach at all levels of play. We are very fortunate to have found her at this time in her career as her presence will provide a great opportunity for ECU Volleyball and the sport to take another big step forward throughout eastern North Carolina.”
Prior to her stint at MU, Rolf spent 14 years heading the University of Minnesota-Duluth program, where she compiled an overall record of 310-169 (.647). Her 310 wins rank among the top 25 in Division II history.
The four-time Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC) Coach-of-the-Year guided the Bulldogs to a 165-20 (.892) NSIC record, a mark which also included 11 league titles. She led UMD to the NCAA Division II Regional Tournament three times (1991, 1994 and 1998) and averaged 22 wins a season during her 14 campaigns.
Rolf has also gained coaching experience at the Junior Olympic level, serving as an assistant at both the 1992 and 1993 USA Volleyball Women’s Junior Elite Camp in Colorado Springs and at the 1994 U.S. Olympic Festival in St. Louis.
Her commitment to understanding all facets of the game enabled Rolf to receive her Federation Internationale de Volleyball (FIVB) International Officiating Certificate in 2003, making her just one of 15 female international officials in the world. She has been a registered national volleyball official since 1990 and worked as a line judge in both the men’s and women’s volleyball competitions (including the women’s gold medal match) at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta. In July of 2007, Rolf officiated the Pan American Games in Brazil, and in June of 2008, she officiated a FIVB World League match between Finland and the United States.
A native of Hopkins, Minn., Rolf was a four-year volleyball letterwinner at North Dakota State University (1981-84) where she graduated with a bachelor of arts degree in university studies. As a senior, she captained the Bison while gaining NCAA Division II All-Region and All-North Central Conference (NCC) honors. She distinguished herself in the classroom as well, earning NCC All-Academic honors twice. In October of 1999, she was inducted into the NDSU Athletic Hall of Fame.
On May 8, 2006, Rolf added yet another honor to her resume as she was part of Hopkins (Minn.) High School’s first Hall of Fame class. Rolf was a multi-sport letterwinner in the early 1980s at Hopkins and earned the Athena Award as the schools’ top female athlete.
Rolf and her husband, Kent, are the parents of two children – son Graydon (21) and daughter Madison (14).