Purdue Names Assistant Coach

John Wilder joins women's volleyball staff.

June 4, 1998

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Purdue volleyball coach Joey Vrazel has announced the hiring of John Wilder as the program's second assistant coach. He joins Ruth Lawanson on the Boilermakers' staff. Wilder's responsibilities will include scouting and videotape breakdown, in addition to assisting in recruiting and team conditioning.

"I'm thrilled to have John on the staff," Vrazel said. "I think he has a tremendous coaching background and he's very familiar with the Big Ten. What he can bring to us in scouting reports is going to be an advantage over what we've been able to do the past couple of years. He's hungry for this experience, and that's valuable for us."

Wilder, who returns to Purdue following an assistantship at Morningside College (Sioux City, Iowa), brings a familiar face to the Boilermaker volleyball program. He served as a volunteer assistant coach for Purdue from 1985-94. Previous to that, Wilder was an assistant coach for the Purdue women's club team from 1970-73, and served as a player-coach for the Purdue men's volleyball club from 1971-74. He headed the men's club program from 1993-97, guiding the squad to a top 25 national ranking. He was named Midwest Intercollegiate Volleyball Association Club Division I Coach-of-the-Year following the 1995 season.

Wilder has coached on the high school and club circuit, as well. He was the head coach at Lafayette Central Catholic High School from 1977-84, and an assistant at Lafayette Jefferson High School from 1985-91. In 1992, Wilder served as head coach of the Newport Beach Volleyball Club and assistant coach of the USA Men's National B Team.

In addition to playing and coaching experience, Wilder has served as an administrator in various volleyball organizations and as an official on the high school, collegiate and international levels.

"It means a great deal to me to be able to contribute to the Purdue women's volleyball program," Wilder said. "To be associated with Joey and Ruth, who were both outstanding players and are outstanding coaches, is a privilege for me. I expect to learn a lot, as well as contribute to the success of the Purdue program in the coming years."

A native of Angola, Ind., Wilder earned his bachelor's degree in physical education from Purdue in 1974. He earned a master's degree in biology education from Purdue in 1981. Wilder currently resides in Lafayette with his wife, Sharon. He has two daughters, Juli and Robin.

The Boilermakers' season is slated to begin with the annual Mortar Board Purdue Premier on Sept. 4-5. Purdue will look to defend its 1997 tournament title against Alabama-Birmingham, Central Florida and Kentucky.