Bob Yoder To Be Honored At "The Ernie Event" Jan. 31

    Ernie Hix, Bill Ferguson, Bob Yoder (left to right)
    Jan. 12, 2015

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    Bob Yoder, who led USC to NCAA championships as a player and then as its head coach, will be honored at the second annual "The Ernie Event" on Jan. 31 in the Founders Room at USC's Galen Center.

    Former Trojan players and coaches will join fans at the event that will punctuate the first month of the 2015 USC men's volleyball season. A reception begins at 6 p.m., followed by a 7 p.m. dinner and program. USC senior associate athletic director J.K. McKay will be the guest speaker. The 2015 USC men's volleyball team, currently ranked No. 7 nationally, will be introduced, with remarks from head coach Bill Ferguson.

    The tribute is open to the public. Cost is $75, payable in advance by credit card (Visa, Master, American Express) or by sending a check payable to "USC Men's Volleyball Boosters and Alumni Club" to Jason Kennedy, Galen Center, 3400 So. Figueroa St., Los Angeles, CA 90089-2360. A limited number of sponorships also are available; for more information, contact .

    Yoder will be presented with the "Ernie Award." The award and the event are named after legendary former USC men's volleyball head coach Ernie Hix, who is regarded as "The Father of USC Men's Volleyball." During his eight-year (1974-81) tenure at USC, he not only won NCAA championships in 1977 and 1980 and finished as runner-up in 1979 and 1981, but he laid the foundation and fostered the development of the nascent Trojan program. Among the All-American players he coached besides Yoder were Tim Hovland, Dusty Dvorak, Steve Timmons, Celso Kalache, Pat Powers and Bill Stetson (Dvorak, Timmons, Kalache and Powers were Olympians).

    Yoder, who this spring is being inducted into the 2015 class of the USC Athletic Hall of Fame, won NCAA championships first as a USC player and then as its head coach. A four-year (1976-79) letterman outside hitter, he was an All-American first teamer on Troy's first-ever NCAA titlist squad in 1977 (he also helped the Trojans to the runner-up spot in 1979). Also a standout in the classroom, he won an NCAA Post-Graduate Scholarship in 1978. After playing with the U.S. National Team, Yoder was the head coach at Ohio State in 1980 and 1981, leading the Buckeyes to the NCAA Final Four both seasons, then he returned to USC as its head coach for eight years (1982-89), winning the 1988 NCAA championship (and finishing second three times and third once). He was the National Coach of the Year in 1988. With his retired jersey number hanging in the rafters of the Galen Center, he is the patriarch of the "First Family of USC Volleyball," as he is one of six Yoders to have played for the Cardinal and Gold (along with his brother, daughter, and three nephews). He now is involved in real estate development.

    In its history since first fielding a team in 1970, the USC men's volleyball program has won 4 NCAA crowns, appeared in 14 NCAA Final Fours and produced 33 All-American first teamers (including 7 College Players of the Year) and 18 Olympians.

    On Jan. 30, the day prior to "The Ernie Event," the 2015 USC men's volleyball team will host Cal State Northridge at 7 p.m. in the Galen Center. At the match, the jerseys of former Trojan National Players of the Year Tom Duke (1988) and Bryan Ivie (1990, 1991) will be retired.