(Editor's Note: Montana State Press Release)
BOZEMAN -- Montana State head volleyball coach Daniel Jones announced the hiring of Taylor Els as the newest addition to the Bobcats' coaching staff on Monday, June 21. Els, who played her collegiate career and was a four-year starter at Northern Colorado, most recently completed a season as a volunteer assistant at Michigan State.
"Taylor stood out from the beginning of our search process," Jones said. "She is a highly motivated, organized, articulate and passionate person.
"She's coming to us from a perennial Big Ten power in Michigan State where she gained invaluable experience in a number of roles. Combine that with her familiarity with the Big Sky Conference, having led Northern Colorado to the championship in 2019, she had the perfect mix of experience and enthusiasm that I was looking for."
Els served as Northern Colorado's primary libero from 2016-19 and over that time became the Bears' Division I career digs record holder (1,818). Her 607 digs as a junior in 2018 still are a single season record at UNC while she ended her college career with the program's career service aces mark (106). She was a team captain on the 2019 team that won the Big Sky Conference regular season and tournament championships en route to advancing to the NCAA tournament.
She was an Academic All-Big Sky selection all four years at UNC and was a two-time Academic All-District Team honoree.
Els has continued to make an impact in the sport beyond her playing career. The former defensive specialist has coached club volleyball and served as a student assistant at Northern Colorado prior to her stint at Michigan State. While in Lansing, Els gained experience in a variety of areas. She ran defense and serve receive drills for the Spartans while evaluating recruiting film and assisting in practice planning. Els also completed director of operations duties during the 2021 spring season which included her being responsible for Data Volley and camp planning.
"It's a privilege to be here at Montana State," Els said. "I fully believe in Daniel's vision of leaving the program better than you found it. I think he and coach Cole Aiazzi have done a great job building up this program and that's evident with the success they've had the past three years. I'm really excited for the opportunity to work with this staff and these players and to be a part of something bigger than just the game of volleyball."
Els fills MSU's third coaching position on its staff. She will be primarily work with the Bobcats' liberos and defensive positions. Montana State recently announced its 2021 schedule that consists of 12 home matches including the Bobcat Classic.
"Taylor just gets coaching," Jones said. "Her father is a lifetime Division I football coach, so she knows that coaching is more than just wins and losses. It's about assisting young people in their transition to adulthood through the sport that we share a passion for.
"She's going to be a huge asset to our program and I'm excited to get to work with her."