Michael Sealy steps down as head coach of UCLA women’s volleyball after 13 seasons
Coach Michael Sealy watches his team during a match. Sealy has stepped down from UCLA women’s volleyball after 13 years at the helm. (Joseph Jimenez/Assistant Photo editor)
By Amy Ionescu
Dec. 1, 2022 1:10 p.m.
Coach Michael Sealy has stepped down after over a decade at the helm of UCLA women’s volleyball.
UCLA athletics announced Thursday that the 13-year head coach of the Bruins will be leaving the program, which will fall under new leadership for the 2023 season.
Before coaching with UCLA, Sealy spent four years on the UCLA men’s volleyball team as a player, leading the team to a national title and three conference titles. Following his collegiate career, he played professionally overseas and spent time on the U.S. men’s national team in 1994 and 1997.
Sealy also had a four-year stint as an assistant coach for the UCLA men’s and women’s teams before moving on to coach the Hawai’i women’s program to an NCAA tournament semifinals berth in 2009. In 2010, he was hired as the head coach of the UCLA women’s volleyball team.
“Sue Enquist once told me to never judge a player for not having the same passion I had for the sport of volleyball because I have made it my life direction, and to do that demands an extreme level of passion,” Sealy said in the statement. “There are too many days where my passion is less than the players’, so I know it is time to take a break, make a change.”
During his tenure, Sealy led the team to its fourth NCAA title in program history in 2011, an Elite Eight run in 2016 and four Sweet 16 finishes. Sealy coached an AVCA first-team All-American in former outside hitter/opposite Mac May and was awarded a Pac-12 co-Coach of the Year accolade in 2021.
“It’s been an amazing chapter full of euphoric highs and devastating lows and I would not change one thing from that journey,” Sealy said in the statement. “I have to thank all the players over the years who displayed courage, resilience and dedication to themselves, their teams and the university.”
In 2022, UCLA got off to its worst start in program history, losing its first match against an unranked opponent before the Bruins put together their worst losing streak since 2013 to start off conference play.
For the third time in program history – and the third time in Sealy’s 13 years – the Bruins didn’t secure a bid to the NCAA tournament. The team missed out on vital recruiting opportunities and season-securing victories, and a once-dominant program was left without a postseason.
“Mike is and will always be a great Bruin. He won a national championship as both a student-athlete and a head coach,” said UCLA athletic director Martin Jarmond in a statement. “We thank Mike for his many contributions and wish him well in his future endeavors.”
Senior Associate Athletic Director Dr. Kenny Donaldson will lead the national search for a new coach.