Entering his sixth season with the Sam Houston volleyball program, assistant coach Charlie Olson has helped direct the Bearkats to 86 victories and five consecutive appearances in the Southland Conference tournament.
The Kats have made noise in the SLC Tournament in three of the last four years, knocking off both Northwestern State and Central Arkansas to reach the tournament finals in 2016, the first championship-game appearance for the Kats since 1996. That came on the heels of a 2015 run that saw them earned a spot in the finals of the tournament with an opening round straight-set upset of second-seeded and host team Central Arkansas.
Olson joined the Sam Houston athletic staff on March 3, 2014. His responsibilities include recruiting, match statistics, video breakdown and distribution, individual sessions, and practice competition. He also handles the majority of the team's content on social media, including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
He previously served as volunteer assistant for the University of Tennessee volleyball program. Olson's accomplishments with the Vols included the training of with the squad including training of all-American Libero, Ellen Mullins.
Olson has been involved in playing and coaching volleyball for the past 18 years in California, Idaho, Arizona, Virginia and Tennessee.
He has coached junior since 2005 at Desert Sports, Tidewater, Beach Elite and Coastal Virginia volleyball clubs. He was also involved with various high schools including helping lead the Floyd E. Kellam Knights to a third-straight AAA Virginia High School State title as co-head coach. While there, he earned Virginia State AAA Coach of the Year honors in 2012.
While attending Chico State, Olson played on the men's club volleyball team from 2000-2004. He served as floor captain during his last two years at Chico, and during his senior year, earned All-America honors at the national tournament as a middle blocker.
Olson earned a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration and marketing from Chico State where he also was the assistant coach of the women's club volleyball team for two seasons. He also earned a Master of Arts degree in Coaching and Athletic Administration from Concordia University, Irvine in October 2016. The program enhances leadership and administrative skills while building professional growth.
After college, Olson was selected to play for Team USA which comprised of nine other men in the U.S. Virgin Islands Invitational for two years in a row in 2004 and 2005.
Olson began playing volleyball at Campolindo High School in Moraga, Calif., spending one year on junior varsity and three years on the varsity squad as a middle blocker.
During his senior year in 1999, Olson was named captain and led his team to an undefeated regular season in the TCAL, and a win at the North Coast Championships while also receiving first-team all-league and most valuable player honors.
Olson currently resides in Huntsville with his wife, Jill, and their two sons, Van and Reid.