More than 40 coaches applied to be the new volleyball coach at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.
Athletic director Rick Hart chose Travis Filar, who will begin next Thursday and has a busy spring already planned.
The former North Carolina assistant said he will arrive in town Thursday, meet with the Lady Mocs on Friday and then head to Atlanta on a recruiting trip. The spring season begins the next Monday.
"My family and I are chomping at the bit to get there," Filar said over the phone Thursday. "We're super excited to jump into the university and the community, and we can't wait to get there."
Lisa Rhodes retired in December after 17 seasons of guiding the Lady Mocs' program.
"We conducted a national search for her replacement-- and Laura Herron deserves a lot of credit for organizing it -- and Travis did an excellent job and demonstrated to us his knowledge and expertise of volleyball and with this region, and we think he'll be a great fit," Hart said. "He has a plan and he grasps an understanding of all the elements he'll be responsible for."
Filar graduated from Furman in 2000. He spent two years as a volunteer assistant at Kentucky, then two years as an assistant at Memphis before moving to North Carolina for the last few years.
He played on club teams at Furman, and his father, John, was the women's basketball coach at Davidson for 10 years, which provided Travis additional experience with Southern Conference schools.
Filar will begin installing his system little by little beginning with the first spring practice.
"We're not going to give points away," said Filar, whose expertise is defense. "Volleyball is a momentum-driven sport, and if a team is going to score on us, they're going to have to earn every point. We're not going to be careless with the ball and we'll always be attacking with our offense, our serve and transition game."
David Uchiyama is a sports writer at the Chattanooga Times Free Press who began his tenure here in May 2001. His primary beats are UTC athletics — specifically men’s basketball and athletic department administration — and golf, which includes coverage from the PGA Tour to youth events. He also covers other high school sports, outdoor adventures, and contributes to other sections of the newspaper when necessary. David grew up in Salinas, Calif., and began working ...