Nicole Lantagne Welch Adds Ryan Walthall to Women's Volleyball Coaching Staff

Nicole Lantagne Welch Adds Ryan Walthall to Women's Volleyball Coaching Staff

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – The UCSB women's volleyball team added Ryan Walthall as an assistant coach, head coach Nicole Lantange Welch announced. 

"Ryan is a great fit for UCSB volleyball," Welch said. "He is a well-rounded coach who is already impacting our program positively. He brings incredible work ethic, a wide range of experience and great knowledge of the game with him to Santa Barbara."

Walthall will be taking on a number of responsibilities for the team. He will serve as the Gauchos' offensive coordinator, help with recruiting, and will take on video analysis for both scouting and player development. Additionally, he will be in charge of organizing team travel throughout the season.

"Ryan has California roots," Welch said. "But he has been all over the country to develop both as a player and a coach."

Walthall will be arriving to Santa Barbara from Ohio University where he served as an assistant

Ryan Walthall

coach for the women's volleyball team. With the Bobcats, he was the team's defensive coordinator and also provided scouting analysis on Ohio opponents.

Walthall found early success in Ohio, as his defense led the conference in both opponent hitting percentage (.172) and blocks per set (2.75), while also tallying the fifth-most digs (16.24/set).

Prior to his stint in Athens, Walthall spent three seasons as an assistant at the University of North Florida. 

As the top assistant for the Ospreys, Walthall helped UNF to the Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament Championships in back-to-back seasons. In 2011, he coached a defense that boasted the league leaders in blocking, digs, and opponent attack percentage.

Walthall started his coaching career as a volunteer assistant coach with perennial power Nebraska for two seasons. While a member of the Cornhuskers' staff, he assisted with video scouting, film breakdown and team training during practices while also helping with day-to-day administrative office duties. 

Walthall was a four-year winner at Penn State under Coach Mark Pavlik. With the Nittany Lions, he was a part of four national semifinal squads, including the 2006 season when the team competed in the National Championship match.

During his senior campaign in 2007, he ranked 15th in the nation and led Penn State in averaging 2.33 digs per set. While he served as a defensive and serving specialist during his first two seasons at PSU, Walthall made the move to libero as a junior and helped the Nittany Lions to a 21-8 record and a national runner-up finish.

Walthall also earned his bachelor's degree in recreation, parks and tourism management at Penn State in May 2007.

Originally from Irvine, Calif., Wathall attended Woodbridge High School where he was a Volleyball Magazine Fab 50 selection and team MVP as a senior. At the club level, he competed for the LBC, helping the team to the 2003 Junior Olympic National Championship.