Video Helps Michigan Elite Develop Players in Club and Beyond
After becoming one of the first volleyball clubs on Hudl in 2012, Michigan Elite saw huge increases in player development and recruitment. And in the last six years, the club’s success has only grown.
Michigan Elite’s focus is getting players ready for the next stage of play. As one of the largest volleyball clubs in the Great Lakes region, Michigan Elite has more than 1,500 athletes and 150+ teams across five locations. Director of training Jaison “Faisa” George said players choose the club to be trained on their next steps in the sport.
“We don’t ever come in and have an easy day,” George said.
Michigan Elite parents are avid supporters of the teams. Before Hudl, they were also avid filmers—coaches could look into the stands and see 20 or more people recording. To help parents focus on the match, Michigan Elite added Hudl so only one parent needed to record. Everyone had access to watch the video after it was uploaded to the team’s Hudl account.
It didn’t take long for the coaching staff to realize Hudl had benefits beyond keeping parents from crowding the court.
Parents, coaches and players all love Hudl highlights. The players like the control it gives them and their parents are excited about the increase in recruitment offers.
"It's amazing how the recruiting game has changed here."
Jaison "Faisa" George, Training Director
Vince Muscat, club director, said the best college coaches are watching all the videos they receive. “You have to captivate a college coach the first 30, 40 seconds,” he said. “When you send a video, you better knock ‘em out.”
Muscat also serves as recruiting director for Michigan Elite. He’s the only staff member working on recruitment and Hudl makes it easy for him to send highlights with public athlete profiles. By copying a link, Muscat can share a player’s videos with any interested coaches.
Hudl has helped Michigan Elite further its mission to help players improve their technique and understanding of the game. Neil Rucinski, tournament manager and Mizuno 18 head coach, said the coaching staff saw improvements in technical areas like positioning and platform.
Video has made players more accountable. George tried telling his team they were too closely bunched on the court, but it took seeing it on video for the players to make a change. It helped them pull off a major upset.
“Once they see it, they believe it,” George said.
Video also helps the coaching staff ensure players get consistent training throughout the club’s five locations. If a team is struggling, the staff can watch their video to see where things are going wrong.
Quick access is key for coaches, especially at the club level where there’s limited “classroom” time with players. Rucinski uses Hudl to send notes to his players so they can look at it when they have time and come to practice knowing what they’ll be working on.
"In volleyball, everyone's eyes are on the kid that’s touching the ball. As a coach, we have to be eyeing the kids who are not touching the ball."
Jaison "Faisa" George, Training Director
Because teams may play as many as six matches in a single day, coaches need help with their stats. Hudl Assist breaks down key statistics in less than 24 hours, giving coaches more time to focus on scouting and preparations for the next game.
Spike in Results
Muscat took Hudl beyond the club level and used it to coach his high school team to a district title. They prepared by watching their opponent’s videos and looking for weaknesses in their past game.
"That’s one of the matches I’ll always remember, and that was Hudl. That was video, that was scouting and that’s the only reason that we won that championship."
Vince Muscat, Club Director
In the beginning, Hudl was just a way for Michigan Elite to share video. Now it’s a key resource for their club.
“It was great back on day one,” Rucinski said. “But then every year there was something changed, improved or added. It’s kept growing all these years.”