BOZEMAN — (Editor's Note: Montana State Press Release)
Cole Aiazzi, who recently completed his fourth season as an assistant with the Montana State volleyball program, has been promoted to associate head coach, announced Bobcat head coach Daniel Jones on Wednesday.
Aiazzi will continue to serve as MSU’s recruiting coordinator where he is responsible for communication and evaluation of all future Bobcat volleyball players. Additionally, he contributes to practice planning and generating scouting reports. With the promotion, Aiazzi will move from the defensive side of the net, taking over the Bobcat offense.
“When you look around the country, any of the great programs have consistency in the head coach and lead assistant positions,” Jones said. “There is no doubt that we are striving to build a legacy of greatness here at Montana State and having that consistency is one key to achieving that. Cole is my right-hand, and I look forward to continuing to build the program for years to come with him.”
Since joining the MSU coaching staff, Aiazzi has played an integral part in the rise of the program, and in particular the rise of his position groups to prominence within the conference as well as on the national stage. During the 2021 spring season, the Bobcats saw significant improvement in blocking, hitting percentage, kills, and assists.
“Cole’s been with me since the beginning and has been integral in the transformation of the program from a bottom dweller to a title contender,” Jones added. “He has proven time and time again the immense value he brings to the program on and off the court, this change in his role within the program is reflective of his value.”
Under Aiazzi’s tutelage, former Bobcat defensive standout Allyssa Rizzo passed the 2,000-dig threshold, the first to do so in the Blue and Gold. Rizzo also smashed the single-season dig record and accumulated 2,122 career saves, earning Big Sky Conference Libero of Year and all-Big Sky First-Team accolades. She became just one of three players in Big Sky history to notch over 2,000 digs.
This past spring season, MSU finished with its second straight winning campaign, a milestone that hadn’t been reached since the 2003 and 2004 seasons. The Bobcats’ third-place Big Sky finish was its best since 2004.
Montana State will open its 2021 fall schedule when it travels to Boise, Idaho, for the Bronco Invitational, August 27-28.