Lipscomb volleyball coach Brandon Rosenthal[apos]s program can be summed up in three words - passion, effort and family.
[quote]The one thing that stands out with the greats in their respective fields is passion,[quote] Rosenthal said. [quote]Passion is the cornerstone of what I am all about. Everything I do in life is done with passion.[quote]
As he prepares for his fifth season as head coach of the Lady Bisons, the passion burns just as strongly as the day he began the task of taking the program to a higher level. Last season marked the fourth straight time the Lady Bisons have increased their match wins for the season, finishing fourth in the Atlantic Sun Conference with a 6-3 record and a new school record for overall match wins with 14. The Lady Bisons also made their second straight appearance in the A-Sun Tournament, advancing to the semi-finals for the second time.
[quote]It is a challenge each year to win more matches than we did the year before,[quote] Rosenthal said. [quote]Our past success says a lot about what we have done as a program. We have recruited players who want to be part of something special.
[quote]It is more than just volleyball. We are recruiting players who want to be part of a legacy.[quote]
Rosenthal has worked hard to recruit players who possess a passion, not only for volleyball, but for life as well. Whether it[apos]s on the court, in the classroom or out in the community the players have to be willing to put forth the effort to succeed on a daily basis.
[quote]I want to see that passion each and every day,[quote] Rosenthal said. [quote]That is the hardest part of what I ask for from my players. I expect their best, and by that I mean effort, whether it is on the court, in the classroom, traveling with the team or performing community service.
[quote]Practices are tough, both mentally and physically. I want our players to be challenged because when the official blows the whistle to start a match it is the player, not the coach, who makes the difference.[quote]
The statistics posted by the Lady Bisons as a team and as individual players have been increasingly impressive each season. But Rosenthal thinks the game of volleyball is about more than the numbers.
[quote]There are coaches who are obsessed with stats and coaches who think stats are just part of the game. I am not one to get caught up in the numbers. I listen to my coaches, my players and my heart.
[quote]As a team, whether we win or lose, the one thing I ask is that we give maximum effort. The difficult challenge is making that same team go further than they have ever gone on a daily basis.[quote]
After spending two seasons as a graduate assistant coach for the Lady Bisons, Rosenthal became one of the youngest head coaches in NCAA Division I at the age of 25. He took over a program that had never won more than four matches in a season and immediately grasped the challenges facing him.
[quote]We have built this program from the ground up,[quote] Rosenthal said. [quote]And we have done it the right way. Doing things the right way make players want to be a part of your program. My biggest concern is building this program into one that will continue to be a success over a long period of time.[quote]
Heading into the 2007 season, Rosenthal is welcoming his best recruiting class ever. For the first time since he took over the program every player on the roster will has been recruited by him.
[quote]Something that stands out for me is the drive and determination of each one of our players to not only make their mark, but to be part of something bigger than just themselves,[quote] Rosenthal said. [quote]I feel it is crucial at this level that the players realize they are not just joining a team, but they[apos]re joining a family.[quote]
With all of the pieces in place the Lady Bisons look to win their first ever Atlantic Sun Tournament Championship and make their first trip to the NCAA Tournament.
[quote]This is going to be an important year on all levels for us,[quote] Rosenthal said.
While excited about the success that the team has garnered on the court, it[apos]s the continued success off the court that drives Rosenthal.
[quote]It[apos]s exciting to be a part of the student-athlete[apos]s life,[quote] Rosenthal said. [quote]College is such a life changing experience and it is an awesome experience to witness the changes from their first report date until graduation.[quote]
Rosenthal[apos]s 15 years of volleyball experience spans the country, allowing him the ability to draw from many different forums. In the spring, Rosenthal coaches the Impact Volleyball Club in Nashville.
Rosenthal was awarded a Bachelor of Arts degree from Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif. He also has earned a Master of Business Administration degree from Lipscomb.
Born in Burbank, Calif., Rosenthal got his first taste of the sport of volleyball on the West Coast. When his family moved to Pittsburgh, Pa., he spearheaded a drive to add volleyball to the varsity programs at his high school. At Pepperdine, Rosenthal continued his love for the game by playing club volleyball.
In the spring, Rosenthal coaches high school-aged athletes for the Impact Volleyball Club in Nashville. Three of the past four years Rosenthal has coached his team at the Junior Olympic National Tournament.
[quote]The Impact Volleyball Club program allows me the opportunity to give back to the community, while working on coaching techniques at the same time,[quote] Rosenthal said.
Rosenthal and his wife, Kate, live in Nashville. They have a 2-year-old daughter, Jake.