Hal Clifton became the ninth head coach in the history of
the North Carolina A&T volleyball program on August 2, 2011 when Director
of Athletics Earl Hilton announced his signing. He comes to A&T charge of leading
the Aggies back to the success they enjoyed during the 1990's and early 2000's. In the two years prior to him taking his
first post as a collegiate head coach, the Aggies posted just four wins.
In his first season with the Aggies, the Aggies went 2-27
overall and 2-8 in the MEAC. The 2011 Aggies were a young squad and had the
minimum of six players on the roster to start the season. Clifton developed those players and added
others to the team as the season progressed.
obstacles, Clifton helped middle hitter Jeana Daniels become one of the most
improved players in the MEAC. He also converted outside hitter Chelsea Fox into
a strong setter and he oversaw the steady improvement of middle hitter Andrea
Evans. He saw five players named to the MEAC All-Academic Team in
In 2012, the Aggies
will bring one of the largest classes in school history. It is a class seven
freshmen and one sophomore that expands from Hawaii to Texas to Tennessee.
Clifton came to A&T after concluding his sixth season as
the assistant coach of the Elon Phoenix. He played a major part in turning the
Phoenix from a 9-23 team in 2005 to a squad that finished in first place in the
Southern Conference North Division in 2010 with a 21-14 overall record and an
11-5 mark in the league. Clifton came to
Elon University in August of 2005 from St. Andrews Presbyterian College where
he served as the assistant coach for the 2004 season.
At St. Andrews, Clifton helped lead the team to the NCAA Division II Tournament
and a regional ranking of seventh. The team tied a school record with 14
conference victories and advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in
school history. Clifton coached four all-conference athletes at St. Andrews and
one conference freshman of the year.
Before his stint at St. Andrews, Clifton spent three years
as the head coach at Jack Britt High School in Fayetteville, N.C. At Jack
Britt, he achieved an overall record of 62-20, including a 28-2 season. Clifton
was a three-time Mid-Southeastern Conference Coach of the Year and the Cape
Fear Region Coach of the Year in 2003. He led Jack Britt to consecutive conference
championships and state tournament appearances in 2002 and '03. Clifton coached
three Mid-Southeastern Conference players of the year along with nine
Clifton also served six seasons as the head coach of the Carolina Region High
Performance club team from 2002-2007. In 2003 and '04, he served as the head
coach of the developmental team before becoming the head coach of the youth
team in 2005. Clifton also spent three seasons with the Fayetteville Area
Volleyball Association as a head coach. His 17-and-under team won the Carolina
Regional Championship and three other tournaments in 2002.
Clifton graduated with a B.S., degree in athletic training from Appalachian
State University in 1994, where he played for the men's volleyball club team.
While at Appalachian State, Clifton received the Ron H. "Doc" Kannoy Award for
the most outstanding athletic trainer.
He earned his master's in exercise and sport science from the University of
Florida in 1996. During his time at Florida, Clifton served as the athletic
trainer for the World University Volleyball team while they trained and played
exhibition matches throughout the state of Florida prior to going to Japan for
competition. As an athletic trainer at Florida, Clifton worked with the 1994
Southeastern Conference Champion football team along with the top ranked men's
tennis and men's golf programs.
Clifton and his wife, Jennifer, have two children.