USA Volleyball begins search for replacements

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- The U.S. men's and women's volleyball teams are looking for new coaches.

Women's coach Toshi Yoshida took a teaching and coaching job in his native Japan and men's coach Doug Beal is becoming chief executive officer of USA Volleyball, the organization said Thursday.

Yoshida was asked to coach the team for the next four years in preparation for the 2008 Summer Games in Beijing but opted for a return to his roots and a chance to study the game from a different angle.

"I am so appreciative of USA Volleyball for making me an offer and giving me another opportunity to try and make an Olympic medal team," Yoshida said. "I know I am going to miss this."

Yoshida, an assistant coach for the United States from 1979-83 and again from 1998-2000, compiled a record of 87-59 as head coach of the program from 2001-04. The Americans, who gained the world's top ranking on two separate occasions during his tenure, were beaten by Brazil in the quarterfinals at the Athens Games in August.

Beal, who coached the men to an Olympic gold medal in 1984, has served USA Volleyball in a number of capacities during a career of more than 30 years. He took his third team to the Summer Games this year, when the Americans finished fourth in Greece -- their best Olympic showing in 12 years.

"Giving up coaching is very hard to do," Beal said. "But this opportunity is special and I feel great about the decision."