HEAD COACH & CAMP DIRECTOR SHARON CLARK
Under the guidance of head coach Sharon Clark, who will be in her 18th season with the Bulldogs in 2017, the Butler volleyball program has won championships, reached the NCAA Tournament and produced All-American players.
Butler ended the 2016 campaign with a 20-14 overall record. The team led the NCAA in both total kills and total assists for a majority of the season, ending the year ranked 11th in each category. Coach Clark helped sophomore outside hitter Anna Logan reach All-America status. Logan ended the year ranked seventh in the NCAA with 659.5 total points. She was also in the top-ten (9th) in total kills with 578. Those numbers allowed Logan to earn First Team All-BIG EAST, AVCA All-Region and AVCA honorable mention All-American honors.
The Bulldogs posted their second straight 20-win season in 2014, defeating non-conference foes Virginia Tech and Indiana on their way to finishing with a 20-10 overall record. Butler went 12-6 in conference play and tied for fourth in the BIG EAST with Xavier, the seventh consecutive season the team finished with a conference record at .500 or better.
The 2014 season saw seniors Belle Obert and Erica Stahl take all-conference honors yet again, with Obert taking home First Team All-Conference honors and Stahl second team honors. Obert was later recognized as an All-East Region selection. Newcomer Makayla Ferguson earned BIG EAST Freshman of the Year honors while also being named Second Team All-Conference.
The Bulldogs opened the 2013 season with a 16-3 record, with wins over regionally-ranked opponents Illinois State and Creighton. Clark’s leadership helped the team finish the regular season strong by winning six of their last seven matches.
Post-season awards followed the final game of the year as Belle Obert and Erica Stahl, were named First Team All-BIG EAST. Senior setter Morgan Peterson was tabbed Second Team All-BIG EAST. The trio of Obert, Stahl and Peterson continued to collect hardware under Clark’s coaching as each student-athlete went on to be named All-East Region by the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA). Stahl would take the ultimate award home for the 2013 season as she was named to the AVCA honorable mention All-America Team on Wednesday, Dec. 18.
Clark has posted 11 winning seasons during her tenure, including seven-straight winning seasons from 2008-2014. She has achieved six 20-win seasons at Butler in 2003, 2009, 2010, 2013, 2014 and 2016.
In 2010, Clark mentored the Bulldogs to the Horizon League Volleyball Championship and an NCAA Tournament appearance. The 2010 season started with the team playing some of the nation's top teams, including Baylor, Louisville and Arizona. The tough competition paid off as Butler would go 13-3 in the Horizon League and then win the league tournament as the No. 2 seed. After playing in the NCAA tourney, Butler finished the 2010 season with a 21-10 record.
Clark's 2009 Butler squad was another standout group as that team posted a 21-14 record that included a perfect 9-0 mark at home. The total of 21 wins was, at the time, the program's highest mark since 1997. Another milestone for Clark came during the 2009 season, when the coach picked up her 250th career victory.
The 2003 squad put together a successful season under Clark’s guidance with a 20-12 overall record, finishing the season ranked fourth in the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Midwest region and 55th nationally, according to RPI rankings. That campaign was followed by a 12-2 Horizon League mark in 2004.
A proven recruiter and developer of talent, Clark has coached a pair of two-time AVCA All-Americans during her tenure at Butler. Jessica Wolfe was honorable mention All-American in 2009 and 2010 as well as a 3-time All-Horizon League player. Former BU great Areal Bienemy was named as an AVCA All-America honorable mention selection in 2003 before repeating the honor in 2004.
Clark came to Butler after serving as the head coach at the University of California-Davis for six seasons. Her tenure with the Aggies was filled with success, as her teams averaged more than 16 wins per season and claimed two Northern California Athletic Conference titles to earn appearances in the NCAA Division II Championship. In addition, 90 percent of her student-athletes graduated, proving her commitment to both sides of the term "student-athlete."
Clark racked up a 97-85 (.533) record in six years at UC-Davis. The 1996 team was her most successful group, boasting a 21-11 overall record and a dominant 11-1 mark in league play as the Aggies won their second Northern California Athletic Conference (NCAC) title in three seasons and made a return trip to the NCAA Division II Tournament.
The Aggies' successful 1996 campaign earned Clark her second Coach of the Year honor from the NCAC. She was also honored as the Tachikara/AVCA Southwest Region Coach of the Year and was nominated for national coach of the year honors.
Clark began her head coaching career at Humboldt State in Arcata, Calif., where she spent a year on the Lumberjacks sidelines before moving to UC-Davis.
Prior to that, she served as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at her alma mater Cal State-Sacramento from 1990-92, helping the Hornets to a 41-6 record in 1990 and an NCAA Division II quarterfinals appearance. In its first NCAA Division I season, the team posted a 20-13 record and a trip to the National Invitational Volleyball Championship.
Clark's collegiate volleyball journey began at Cal State-Sacramento, where she played from 1985-88. Playing in 228 games over four years, she helped the Hornets to the NCAA Division II playoffs in each of her four seasons.
In addition to her work on the sidelines, Clark is involved with several committees and numerous NCAA educational programs. She serves as a co-chair of the AVCA Minority Coaches Clinic and serves on the Butler University Human Resources and Organizational Development committee. Additionally, she has been a facilitator at the NCAA Career in Sports Forum.
Clark sits on several national advisory boards and works as a Cadre with the USA Volleyball Coaching Accreditation Program (CAP), where she helps new coaches to become more educated and acclimated in the coaching field.
Clark is a 2005 graduate of the NCAA's Women Coaches Academy, which was created to enhance the skills and perspectives of women coaches and to aid in the retention of women coaches in intercollegiate athletics. A former winner of the NCAA Ethnic Minority Postgraduate Scholarship, Clark also co-founded Club Sacramento, a junior volleyball team, in 1985. She coached the team for eight years, including a sixth-place finish in the 1991 Junior Olympics.
In 2007, she was honored with the Sam Lacy Pioneer Award, presented by the sports task force of the National Association of Black Journalists, for her success and leadership as an NCAA head coach and member of the AVCA. Earlier that year, she was recognized as just one of six recipients nationwide of the Rebecca Howard Star Award from USA Volleyball for demonstrating a successful commitment to diversity in the sport.
Clark graduated with a bachelor's of science degree in physical education from California State-Sacramento in 1989 and received her master's degree in sports administration from her alma mater in 1994.
She and her husband, Tim, have a son, Myles Oliver.
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