BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — Carl Ferreira has coached volleyball for nearly 40 years. This season, he led the Bakersfield College Women’s Volleyball team to a 19-match win streak and an appearance in the CCCAA Championships.
A feat and career, he never imagined.
“If you would have told me that I was going to coach Division I at Stanford and the University of Oregon. I didn’t have that big of a dream at the time, it just kind of played itself out,” said Ferreira.
Born and raised in Hawaii, Ferreira played many sports, but ultimately pursued a basketball career at Santa Rosa’s Junior College. A stint that was short-lived, after finding a passion for volleyball.
“When I was at Santa Rosa Junior College, I took a physical education volleyball class and the head coach, was the instructor of the class and she saw that I had played previously and asked if I can come practice against her team,” recalled Ferreira.
Shortly after, he started his own youth teams and summer camps. He landed his first big gig in 1991 at Fresno State, his alma mater.
“Things just evolved. I just put myself in the correct situation and I got a little bit of momentum going, found a little bit of a passion and it was just more situational, then a plan,” said Ferreira.
He went on to coach at Stanford, Idaho, Cal State Bakersfield and the University of Oregon.
Lessons, he now brings to Kern County and his daughter, Elise.
“Elise grew up in the gym. She’s been around the sport for her entire career. It’s been an honor to work with her in two capacities, one as her father and the other as her coach,” said Ferreira.
A Liberty High graduate and standout athlete, Elise knew what it took to become a national competitor
She practiced and performed, day in and day out since she was 7-years-old,
alongside her father.
“I saw what it took. I saw that this is a high level. How do I get there? This is the way to get there. I can’t play down if I want to be great and reach a high level,” said Elise.
According to PrepVolleyball, Elise is nationally ranked in the Top 100.
“I feel like I helped her and impacted her a lot. But, ultimately she is finishing the journey with her own work ethic and her desire and her passion for what she wants to accomplish,” said Ferreira.
Now, she will return to where it all started for her, the University of Oregon. A place she was born and now a place she’s moving back to. To join the team her dad once coached.
“I can’t tell you how I’m going to feel when she’s no longer there, because it hasn’t happened yet. But I want to replace the sadness with excitement for her because it’s her journey,” said Ferreira.
“I’m very excited. It’s obviously really sad. I only have a little bit of time left but the excitement and happiness outweighs leaving Bakersfield. I think its’ time for bigger things,” said Elise.
Elise graduated early from Liberty High with a 4.5 GPA. She will head to the University of Oregon on January 7.