BREAKING: Anders Nelson announced as new Vanderbilt volleyball head coach

Nelson most recently served as Kentucky’s associate head volleyball coach, where he helped lead the Wildcats to win the 2020 NCAA National Championship and six consecutive SEC titles.


Vanderbilt Athletics

Anders Nelson was announced as the head coach of Vanderbilt’s new volleyball team today. (Photo courtesy of Vanderbilt Athletics)

Matthew Shipley, Senior Staff Writer

Anders Nelson will be the first head coach of the new Vanderbilt Volleyball program, the university announced this morning. Nelson most recently served as the associate head volleyball coach at Kentucky for seven years and helped lead the Wildcats to win the 2020 NCAA National Championship and six consecutive SEC titles.

“It is a unique honor to join the Vanderbilt family as the first head volleyball coach of this new era,” Nelson said. “From the beginning of my lifelong relationship with volleyball, I learned to value not only the thrill of competition but the opportunity to influence how young people see themselves and the world around them.”

In April, Athletic Director Candice Lee revealed the university would be adding women’s volleyball as Vanderbilt’s 17th varsity sport in Fall 2025. Vanderbilt initially added volleyball in 1979 following the implementation of Title IX; however, the team was discontinued just one year later.

“I want our volleyball student-athletes to walk into a championship-caliber program, which is why I’m so excited to welcome Anders Nelson as our first coach,” Lee said. “Coach Nelson not only has valuable experience as part of SEC and NCAA championship teams but embraces and understands the unique opportunity that is Vanderbilt. He’s excited to come to work every day to help young people dare to grow.”

Lee said hiring Nelson now—nearly three years before Vanderbilt starts competition in 2025—will allow him to have all 12 scholarship student-athletes recruited and build the infrastructure to have competitive success in his inaugural season.