Lincoln - Nebraska Head Coach John Cook announced on Friday the hiring of Louisville assistant and former Husker Dani Busboom to Nebraska’s volleyball staff. Busboom spent the past season with the Cardinals, helping them to a 24-9 record in 2011 including a trip to the semifinals at the Big East Conference Tournament.
“I’ve been waiting for the day to be able to offer a coaching position at Nebraska to one of our former players,” Cook said. “Dani has proven herself at two major Division I programs and as an assistant with USA Volleyball’s Select A2 Program. She has worked hard to put herself in position to be a Nebraska volleyball coach. I loved coaching Dani as a player, she is a winner. She played two different positions here, she has a passion for coaching, and I’m excited to work alongside her to help our team accomplish its goals.”
Busboom will take over for Dan Conners who resigned last week. Her responsibilities will include assisting Coach Cook with the setters, liberos and outside hitters, while Dan Meske will coach the middle blockers and coordinate the Huskers’ blocking defense.
"I could not be more excited to be a part of the Nebraska family again,” Busboom said. “Not only is it home for my husband and I, but it is arguably the best volleyball program in the country. Since I started a career in coaching, I have been hoping for the opportunity to compete for a National Championship again. There is no place I'd rather do that than at Nebraska. I am very thankful for the opportunity that Dr. Osborne and Coach Cook have given me and look forward to continuing the tradition of Nebraska volleyball.
“I loved my time at Louisville and it was one of the best learning experiences I could have had. Anne Kordes is an amazing coach, person and mentor. Louisville's athletic department is top notch, and I will always be thankful for the experience I had there."
Prior to her time at Louisville, Busboom was an assistant coach at Tennessee where she worked with the team’s setters, coordinated travel and equipment needs and ran the school’s summer volleyball camps.
"Rob Patrick gave me my first chance at coaching at Tennessee, and I very thankful for that,” Busboom said. “Tennessee is a great program, and I realized there I definitely wanted to make a career out of coaching.”
As a captain at Nebraska, Busboom moved from setter to libero in 2006 to help Nebraska’s defense and finished her career as one of only two players to rank among NU’s all-time leaders in both digs (1,281, second) and assists (2,873, eighth). She was a four-year starter for Cook, guiding NU to a 124-10 record, the best four-year mark in school history, three Big 12 titles, two NCAA finals appearances and a national title in 2006.
Busboom was considered the Big 12’s best libero in 2006, as she helped NU limit opponents to a Big 12-low .144 hitting percentage. She set Nebraska’s single-season digs record (580) in her first year as a libero, breaking the previous mark of 480 by Amanda McCormick in 2004. As a senior she reached double figures in digs in 32 of 34 matches, including 21 straight matches with at least 10 digs. She notched her best defensive performance at the NCAA semifinals against UCLA, totaling a career-high 29 digs, which ranks as the second-highest postseason performance in school history.
“One of my goals as being the head coach of Nebraska is to develop future coaches, especially players who come from our program,” Cook said. “I always tell them when they say they want to be coaches that they need to go away from Nebraska and see what else is out there and then come back.”
In addition to her accomplishments on the court, Busboom excelled off the court for the Huskers. She was a 2006 second-team academic All-District VII selection, while earning six Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll accolades and becoming a three-time first-team academic All-Big 12 honoree. She earned a bachelor's degree in communication studies from Nebraska in 2007.
Following her graduation, Busboom spent time with the U.S. Women's National Training Team before working as a sales representative for an Omaha insurance company. She has worked as a sideline reporter for radio broadcasts of Nebraska volleyball matches on the Husker Sports Network and also as an assistant coach with USA Volleyball’s Select A2 Program. Dani and her husband, former Nebraska football player Lane Kelly, were married in the summer of 2010.