The Road to Normal for BHS Volleyball
Head Coach Kyle Rhatigan is enjoying a “return to normal” this volleyball season - saying goodbye to athletes playing in masks and hello to stands full of parents, students, and community. As the Head Coach of BHS volleyball since 2014, and assistant coaching since 2011, Coach Kyle has seen a lot of program highlights including spirited competition with Fairview HS and feel-good family banquets.
Prior to the COVID pandemic, BHS Volleyball was on the cusp of a really exciting era. All levels of teams were highly competitive, the program was full of fun activities and was well-supported by the community. Away game meals for the athletes were sponsored by local businesses, and the girls enjoyed big sister/little sister connections within the program and making highlight reels at the end of the season. These were all signs of a thriving and successful program… and then the pandemic hit. We all know the story since then- school was disrupted, seasons canceled, athletes dispersed by personal and academic upheaval. Everything that the program had worked so hard to become came to a halt. Now, it is time to refocus on all those things that make BHS Volleyball special.
The return to normal has been steady over the last season in particular, and Coach Kyle wants to stress to the parents and community how much their support means to the athletes, especially now. Support looks like fellow students filling the stands and cheering loudly - which in turn creates such energy and momentum for the teams. It also means parents supporting their athletes and teams through program involvement. Coach Kyle particularly wants parents to know that the athletes really and truly appreciate your support, even if they don’t always know how to show it.
This year, Coach Kyle and the assistant coaches are happy to be focusing on some core values of the program; developing confidence, competitive drive, and continual growth. He wants to see the athletes using every opportunity they can to be better - on and off the court. This shows up in being a better friend, a better student, a better person. Coach Kyle is looking forward to more program-wide activities and drills, opportunities to interact and give back to the community. He is especially excited about all the energy that Athletic Director Bishop is bringing to BHS Athletics along with opportunities for school-wide community building across all the sports programs. As for this year’s teams, Coach Kyle is excited to see that, despite being young across the board, there are leadership opportunities across all grades that the girls are already stepping up to.
Coach Kyle knows what it is like to be a student-athlete. Growing up in California, where boys’ volleyball was common and there were many opportunities to play in school, clubs, and beach volleyball tournaments, it was a central theme in his youth. After high school he decided to come to CU for college, where men’s volleyball is a club sport. Rising to president of the club during his tenure at CU, he led the team to a 5th and then a 3rd place national ranking, earning his own title of “First Team All-American” on the way. He became a practice player with the CU women’s Division-1 team, where he credits the high level coaching he received with learning so much about women’s volleyball. For the last 15 years, Coach Kyle has played competitively on the local level while maintaining the relationships and tight-knit community that volleyball has provided throughout the years.
Outside of coaching the BHS Volleyball program, Coach Kyle’s professional life is dedicated to promoting all youth sports in Boulder County - from volleyball to pickle ball and everything in between. He truly believes in the value of sports to create better humans and to add quality of life from youth through adulthood. He’s never quite given up his volleyball glory, and frequently spends his weekends competing. Best of luck, Coach Kyle, and to all of the BHS Volleyball players for the remainder of the season!