Nichols College Director of Athletics Chris Colvin has announced the addition of men's volleyball as a varsity sport beginning in 2018-19.
The college debuted its women's volleyball program this past season and will become the fourth Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) member to feature men's volleyball, joining Endicott, Eastern Nazarene, and Wentworth. The Gulls and Lions compete in the New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) while the Leopards are affiliated with the Greater Northeast Atlantic Conference (GNAC). An official announcement pertaining to the program's conference affiliation will come at a later date.
"I am thrilled to announce the creation of Nichols College's 21st varsity sport," said Colvin. "This decision was made not only with the goal of enhancing the already existing women's volleyball program, but it will also permit us to truly create a full volleyball team at Nichols College. By hiring a full-time head coach to lead both the men's and women's programs, we will be able to better serve our female student-athletes in the sport of volleyball and build the one-year old program at Nichols into an annual competitor in the CCC and in the New England region."
There are 184 high school boys volleyball programs combined in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut, yet only 16 Division III men's volleyball programs currently in those states. The addition of this program to the college's roster will allow for the number of all high school boys volleyball athletes who move on to compete at the collegiate level to increase from its current rate of 3.4 percent.
"Men's volleyball is a growing sport, but one that too many participants give up after high school," added Colvin. "We believe that this will provide a great opportunity for young men to continue with the sport they love while receiving a dynamic, career focused business and professional education at Nichols College."