David McFatrich, who directed Central Arkansas to NCAA Tournament appearances in two of his four seasons as head coach, has been named Mississippi State’s new head volleyball coach, athletic director Scott Stricklin announced Monday. The hiring is pending the approval of the Board of Trustees, Institutions of Higher Learning.
“David possesses all of the characteristics of a successful coach,” said Stricklin. “He has an aggressive style with high energy and connects well with his student-athletes. He has the vision to be great. He’s also a man of good values, and we are excited to have him as a part of the Mississippi State family.”
McFatrich will be formally introduced in Tuesday press conference at 3:30 p.m. on the first floor of the Bryan Athletic Administration Building. Fans are invited to attend.
In his four seasons at the helm of the Sugar Bears, McFatrich showed no fear in going toe-to-toe with the nation’s elite, annually facing programs such as Penn State, Washington, Florida State, Kansas and Oklahoma. Over the past four years, he has amassed an overall record of 96-36 (.727) with a Southland Conference record of 56-11 (.839).
Also upon his arrival in 2007, UCA’s RPI was in the 240’s. Since then, the Sugar Bears climbed up to an RPI as high as 44th nationally.
Arriving at UCA in 2007 as an assistant, McFatrich earned a promotion to head coach of the Sugar Bears in 2011. In his eight total seasons, he saw UCA capture nearly 200 victories, a rate of 25 per season.
McFatrich saw his biggest success the last three years, tallying a record of 46-6 (.885) and a Southland Tournament record of 9-2 (.818). The Sugar Bears averaged nearly 27 wins per season, while piling up numerous championships to help build McFatrich’s legacy as one of the nation’s up-and-coming coaches.
In his eight years at UCA, McFatrich, the 2013 Southland Coach of the Year, produced four Southland Conference Regular Season Championships, two Southland Conference Tournament Championships and four Southland East Division crowns. Individually, McFatrich has produced one ESPN Academic All-American, five Southland Conference Players of the Year, two Southland Liberos of the year, three Southland Freshman of the Year and five Southland Setters of the Year.
In addition, Sugar Bear players have captured numerous conference player of the week awards. Twenty-two UCA players have been named All-Southland Conference, with 19 of those earning first-team laurels.
Most recently, McFatrich faced a tall task in 2014 after the graduation of six players, but took the challenge head on. The Sugar Bears played for a berth in the NCAA Tournament for the third-straight season in the Southland Conference tournament finals and reached the 20-win milestone for the seventh time in his eight years with the program.
In 2014, McFatrich’s Sugar Bears extend the program’s conference winning streak to 38-consecutive matches dating back to 2012, which stands as the longest such streak in Southland Conference history.
McFatrich and UCA finished out 2013 in grand style as the Sugar Bears won their second-straight Southland Conference regular season title, their second-straight conference tournament championship and made their second-straight appearance in the NCAA Tournament. UCA posted a 29-4 record, highlighted by a victory against No. 9 Kansas. That squad became the first Southland team in 23 years to capture the regular season and tournament titles in back-to-back years.
Along the way, the Sugar Bears boasted one of the longest winning streaks in the nation at 22 matches, while also finishing the regular season ranked No. 17 in the Volleyblog Seattle Poll and No. 44 in the RPI.
In 2012, McFatrich led UCA to a 30-5 ledger and Southland Conference regular season and tournament titles. The season saw UCA capture a win against Big 12 foe Texas Tech and earn the first program’s first trip to the NCAA Tournament.
Spanning from 2012-14, McFatrich led the Sugar Bears to 38-straight victories in conference play, the longest such record in Southland Conference history. Also, McFatrich’s 59 total victories between the 2012-13 seasons stood only second to NCAA national champion Penn State for wins during that span.
Success in the classroom has also been prevalent in McFatrich’s time at Central Arkansas. From 2011-13, UCA volleyball earned a perfect NCAA Academic Progress Rate (APR) of 1,000. In that time, UCA has also placed a number of players on the Southland All-Academic team, including the 2012 Student-Athlete of the Year, which recognizes the top student-athlete both on and off the court.
McFatrich is the former Captain & Setter for the 1988 Athletes In Action International Volleyball Team. Touring throughout Latin America, he helped lead the team to a 23-2 record. He has three gold and two silver medals as a member of the Canada Masters Volleyball Team (2009-present), which competes in the U.S. Open each summer. They also finished fifth in the World Masters Games in the summer of 2013.
McFatrich earned a Master’s Degree in Exercise Science from the University of Arkansas in 1988. He and his wife Sonya have three children, Luke (17), Elle (14) and Sami (10).
(From MSU Media Relations)