Kordes, who is a native of Kentucky and grew up on the court with her father, Ron, who has been coaching volleyball for more than three decades (28 of them at the helm of the nationally-ranked Assumption High School girls’ program), is now a director for the Kentucky-Indiana Volleyball Academy (KIVA). Ron is known as the patriarch of volleyball in the Louisville area and has a storied history, not only with Assumption, but also as the KIVA founder. Now, Anne believes she is truly learning from the best.
“It’s definitely not a ‘woe is me’ scenario at all,” Kordes admits. “It’s not like I had to get out of coaching and couldn’t do anything else. This is something that I actually felt equally as passionate about, which is working with my dad and being a part of what he’s built and being able to learn from him.”
What, then, does Kordes’ decision to leave coaching and go into the family business have to do with the subject of this most recent AVCA blog series, early recruiting?
Indeed, the grind of a Power Five collegiate coach is relentless, and one of the major contributors to that grind is recruiting. And, during the past 10-15 years, the recruits have obviously gotten younger and younger. As an NCAA Division I coach, Kordes explains that in order to stay relevant, you have to play the “modern” recruiting game, which means finding potential talent, no matter the place and no matter the age. And if you play the game well, it takes time.
“If you are in the Power Five and you get the budget that we get, then you are uncovering every rock [looking for the best recruits]. Even when you don’t have a scholarship for a transfer, you are still checking out every kid who is transferring. Now that we are recruiting 14-year-old kids, we are just trying to get them interested in us, getting them to call or visit.
And that takes an immense amount of time and energy.
“[As a coach], when you get home from work, that is when the kids are coming off practice and they are getting home at the same time––and they are calling. You have to take those calls because you cannot call them back. I felt like I was coming home from a long day of work and I wanted to spend some time with my family. I would be at the dinner table with my daughter and if she reached for the phone, I couldn’t let her have it because somebody might call. Or, if I got up from the table to go to the bathroom and missed the call, I was literally in a panic, calling the kid’s coach right away and apologizing.”