Eddie Pennington
Head Coach, Men's Volleyball

Tusculum University

Volleyball coach college

Diversity Awards Winner Alumni Series

Eddie pennington – class of 2016



How and where did your coaching career start?

How I got into coaching was through the mentorship of the Head Coach at the University of Illinois Springfield, Trey Salinas. I started my coaching career with him in Denver, CO coaching boys high school (2010), and had my college start at the University of Illinois Springfield as a GA in 2015.

How did it feel to learn that you were an AVCA Diversity Award recipient?

It was a tremendous honor to receive the AVCA Diversity Award. Knowing the history of the award and being a part of this organization has been amazing. I didn’t fathom at the time of receiving this award that it would be something that I would be a part of for a lifetime.

How has the award impacted your career?

This award opened many doors in my volleyball coaching career. Months after receiving the award, and networking with coaches, I was approached by the staff at Butler University, where I spent two great seasons as an assistant. This position then opened the next door in my career with becoming a head coach in 2018.

What’s your favorite coaching memory?

I had the honor of starting this program here at Tusculum, and I would say my favorite memory so far, is my first ever win as a head coach. The time leading up to our first match came with a multitude of emotions, preparation, hard work, and most of all patience. That feeling of earning our first program win was a proud moment for this program. This team grinds day in and out, and they have put in a ton of work as a young program to build and find success.

Do you have a fun fact to share about yourself?

I am superstitious about “game day socks.” If there is a pair that I wore when we had a big win I make a note to wear those on other big game days. Same goes for socks that I may have worn when we had a loss or a close game.


Sports Imports would also like to recognize the entire 2016 class of AVCA Diversity Awards Winners:
  • Ralph Alvarez, Head Coach, 17-1s, Asics Munciana Volleyball Club
  • Renwick Cefra, Assistant Coach, Temple University
  • Lindsay Hawkins, Head Coach, St. Charles North High School (IL)
  • Alonso Ibarra, Club Coach, Texas Performance Volleyball Club
  • Laura Iwuchukwu, 18-Under Armour Head Coach, Oklahoma Charge VBC
  • Nikki Naccarato
  • Alvaro Sanchez, Coach, DME Sports Academy
  • Tanequa Whitman, Club Coach, NASA VBC
  • Jonathan Wong, Assistant Coach, Texas Tech University

To learn more about the AVCA Diversity Awards, visit our blog here.