University of Mount Olive men's volleyball head coach David Heller will be traveling with the USA collegiate men's volleyball national team to Taipei next week as a member of the USA coaching staff to take part in the 29th Summer Universiade August 19-30. This will be Heller's second time traveling with the national team as he first joined the coaching staff in 2015.
The World University Games are held every two years. The WUG bring together over 170 countries to compete in an Olympic style competition. This year there will be 22 sports represented. The sports included in this year's university games are track & field, basketball, diving, fencing, football, artistic gymnastics, rhythmic gymnastics, judo, swimming, table tennis, taekwondo, tennis, volleyball, water polo, archery, badminton, baseball, golf, roller sports, weightlifting, wushu, and billiards. Mirroring the Olympics there is an athlete village, where all athletes and staff stay. Heller was selected to the coaching staff this year after having a strong showing in World University Games in Gwangju, South Korea two years ago.
The USA's competition pool includes Japan, France, host country Taipei, and Brazil. Heller's primary duty during matches will be working with the defense. He will also provide previous WUG experience to new members of the team.
Following the opening ceremonies on August 19, Team USA will begin their pursuit of a gold medal with a matchup against Japan on Aug 20 at 6 p.m. CST (China Standard Time).
"There's an amazing group of talent traveling with this team. Many of them collected All-America honors this past year. I'm really looking forward to working with the entire staff and team in our pursuit of a medal. It truly is an honor to be selected to represent our country," said Heller.
The Trojans' men's volleyball team, in the 2016 season, competed against the teams of the head coach and assistant coach traveling with team USA in John Kosty from Stanford and Dan Friend from Lewis.