New Hawks' head coach isn't really new at all.
Toby Rens returns to the UMES volleyball program after a decade away from Princess Anne. In 15 seasons, he has accumulated a 300-219 (.578) overall record.
Rens has been busy since his time away from UMES. Last season at Chicago State (2013), he inherited a program that had won just five matches in the previous five seasons, garnering a pair of wins with just seven primary players.
Prior to his arrival in Chicago, he coached five seasons at the University of Pittsburgh (2008-12). He won 54-percent of his matches in the competitive Big East Conference and took them to a school-record five consecutive conference berths. During his tenure, he coached three All-Americans, five All-Region selections, 11 All-Conference nods, and a Big East Player of the Year and Libero of the Year. His team had the highest grade-point-average (GPA) in the department two of his five years at Pitt.
Before his stint at Pittsburgh, he guided the Long Island University-Brooklyn volleyball program for four seasons (2004-07). He won the Northeast Conference (NEC) and took them to the NCAA tournament each season. He went 106-46 during that time, a near 70-percent winning percentage, while averaging over 26 wins-per-season. In 2005, Rens was NEC Coach of the Year with his teams earning the AVCA Academic Award three times (2007-08, 2006-07, & 2004-05) and regularly boasted one of the highest team GPAs at LIU, twice taking top honors. Two of his student-athletes were named to the 2007 ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District Team.
The architect of the success experienced by UMES Volleyball over the past decade can really be credited to Rens, who inherited a program who had not won in over two years. In 2001, he won just three matches but quickly turned the program around. In 2002, he went 20-15 followed by a school-record 26-12 mark in 2003, which was recently surpassed in 2012 (28). The 2001 to 2002 season marked the best single-season turnaround in the NCAA. In 2002, he won Mid-Eastern Athletic Confernece (MEAC) Coach of the Year.
Rens started his head coaching career at Northern Michigan where he went 58-17 over two seasons (1998-99). He earned two conference titles and NCAA Tournament berths in both seasons while producing five Wildcats with AVCA All-Region honors and a pair of All-Americans.
Prior to his first head coaching gig, he was an assistant at Texas Tech for one season before coming to UMES (2000). He has also been an assistant at George Washington (1994-97), Tennessee Tech (1993) and his alma mater, Morningside College (1992).
Rens has been highly active in national volleyball circles, serving as a member of the NCAA Division I Head Coaches Committee and as a voter in the USA Today Top 25 Coaches Poll.
A native of Orange City, Iowa, Rens graduated from Morningside in 1993 with a bachelor's in physical education.
Collegiate Head Coaching Record: Toby Rens