USA Volleyball, in collaboration with the First Point Volleyball Foundation, will provide $150,000 to help support two new men’s NCAA Division 1 programs at Northern Kentucky University and the University of Maryland Eastern Shore.
“We are proud to again partner with the First Point Volleyball Foundation to support the growth of collegiate men’s volleyball,” said Jamie Davis, president and chief executive officer of USA Volleyball. “The expansion of educational opportunities and learning experiences for boys through the sport of volleyball is a priority for USAV.”
The two universities will use the funds to establish men’s volleyball programs to begin in the 2025–2026 season. NKU and UMES — a Historically Black College and University — will be the first NCAA Division I public universities to add men’s volleyball in more than two decades. New men’s volleyball programs have been initiated at 100 universities in the last five years, mostly at the DII, DIII and NAIA levels. NCAA men’s volleyball has grown 44% over the last six years and 79% over the last 10 years.
In 2019, USA Volleyball and the First Point Volleyball Foundation, which was co-founded by U.S. Men’s National Team Head Coach John Speraw, granted $1 million to the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association and six HBCUs to launch new collegiate men’s volleyball programs. The NCAA has announced that the conference will now receive an automatic bid to the men’s tournament.
Volleyball is the fastest growing team sport in the United States for high school boys. Participation has increased 20% over the last six years and 34% over the last 10 years. Ten state high school federations have sanctioned boys volleyball in the last five years and others are expressing interest.