HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The University of Hawaii has begun a nationwide search for a new women's volleyball head coach in anticipation of Dave Shoji's retirement, the school announced on Monday.
Shoji, a four-time national champion and the second-winningest coach in NCAA volleyball history, has guided the Rainbow Wahine to 1,202 wins during his 42 year career as the university's head volleyball coach.
"Coach Shoji means so much to the University of Hawai'i," Athletics Director David Matlin said in a statement. "We've been meeting regularly and determined that this was the best step as we move forward with the future of the Rainbow Wahine program."
The reigning Big West Conference Coach of the Year has been battling prostate cancer since November. He announced in December that he planned on taking a leave of absence to receive treatment, but has not yet officially announced his retirement.
Late last month, Shoji spoke publicly for the first time since his cancer diagnosis, telling guests at the Rainbow Wahine's year-end banquet that he was "fine" and that it was nice to see everyone.
Associate head coach Jeff Hall has overseen the program in Shoji's absence over the past several months.
Hall spoke with Hawaii News Now following the announcement, and said he was not surprise to hear the university is preparing for Shoji's possible retirement.
"It's not shocking, we kind of knew that this was in the works. But, this is just a preliminary thing," said Hall. "We don't know that Dave is going to retire. It's just a possibility. I think the university is doing a great job doing their due diligence."
Hall says that he will apply for the job.