In one of the more unusual happenings in NCAA Division I Power 5 women’s volleyball, just more than two weeks before the start of practice, Cal announced Saturday that coach Sam Crosson had resigned on the same day that West Valley College announced that he is the new coach at the community college in Saratoga, California.
Cal is 0-40 the past two seasons in Pac-12 play, mired in a 55-match conference losing streak.
Cal’s news release:
“I would like to thank the University of California and Jim Knowlton for the opportunity to coach this team for the last four and a half years,” Crosson said. “Returning to Cal was a career dream of mine, and I am thankful for the time that I spent with our student-athletes and those that supported the program. After much deliberation, I have made the decision to step down and focus on spending more time with my family.”
Crosson compiled an overall record of 35-78 in four seasons as the Golden Bears’ head coach. In his first year at the helm in 2019, he guided the Bears to a 20-10 record for the program’s first 20-win campaign since 2013. He was previously on the Cal staff as an assistant coach from 2010-12, during which time the team reached the NCAA Tournament in all three seasons.
“I thank Sam Crosson for his dedication to our volleyball program and wish he and his family the best,” said Director of Athletics Jim Knowlton. “I have full confidence in Crissy (Jones Schoonderwoerd) and Savannah (Rennie) to lead our young women through this season.
“Crissy Jones Schoonderwoerd will serve as the program’s interim head coach.”
Jones Schoonderwoerd, 26, is a former Washington standout who finished her college career playing beach at Cal Poly — after Crosson was the indoors coach there — and then played pro beach volleyball. She was hired a Cal exactly a year ago with no coaching experience.
The other assistant is the incomparable Savannah Rennie, about whom we have written extensively, a former Cal great who ended her indoors career at Cal in 2019 and finished at Marquette before becoming a volunteer coach last year at USC. She played for both Rich Feller, who retired, and Crosson, who took Feller’s place.
Last season Cal finished 7-23,…