Get to Know Penn State M. Volleyball Head Coach Mark Pavlik

Get to Know Penn State M. Volleyball Head Coach Mark Pavlik

As Penn State women’s volleyball draws to a close, the men’s season begins. Similar to women’s head coach Russ Rose, men’s volleyball Head Coach Mark Pavlik has been with the NIttany Lions through thick and thin, and enters his 22nd year as head coach.

Pavlik is a Penn Stater himself, and played for Penn State men’s volleyball before graduating in 1982. Pavlik’s experience as both a Nittany Lion athlete - a setter - and now a coach gives him great perspective on all aspects of the court.

One of Pavlik’s greatest claims to fame while coaching at Penn State was winning the 2008 National Championship, bolstering the Penn State men’s volleyball program as one of the premier programs in the country.

Pavlik’s wins come from creating stellar players. Throughout his 22 years at Penn State, Pavlik has coached 21 different players to 41 different All-America awards and honors.

In 2008, Pavlik’s success took him to Brazil for the America’s Cup, where he served as Head of Delegation for the then Olympic Champions, Team USA.


Pavlik has also served on the administration at the World University Games, both in 1994 in Buffalo, N.Y. and in 2001 in Beijing, China. In 1994, Pavlik’s team finished eighth. In 2001, USA took home a gold medal in men’s volleyball for the first time ever, and the first time a USA men’s volleyball team had won a gold medal at any event since the 1988 Olympics.

Despite the high levels of competition at which Pavlik coaches, his approach to training and competing is much different than most coaches at his level.

Pavlik believes in training hard so that games are more relaxed.

“I think I am more concerned about practices than I am about matches,” said Pavlik. “I have the philosophy that the team is going to win or lose the match. I tend to be more demanding in practice where the work gets done. During the matches, I like to help the team use what they have been trained to use."

Volleyball brought together Pavlik’s current family, as Pavlik’s wife played for Juniata College and now coaches there.

Penn State men’s volleyball looks to have a strong return to the court this season under Head Coach Mark Pavlik. Check out their schedule and make your way to Rec Hall!