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The Rocky Mountain Collegian

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Titanic Tom’s 400 milestone deserves more attention

400 — that’s a rather large number.


It’s big enough to pay the rent for most students, outnumber the Facebook friends you never talk to and become the most successful coach in the history of a university that is over 140 years old.

Tom Hilbert’s rent is probably more than $400 per month. There’s also a chance that he doesn’t even belong to Facebook. However, he is CSU’s winning-est coach of all time, thanks to the 400th victory he led his volleyball team to this month.

But the milestone was hardly highlighted any differently than the other 399 wins Hilbert has come away with.

If 400 wins doesn’t seem like much of a big deal, consider the fact that there are only 28 games in an entire volleyball regular season — and that Hilbert has only been teaching CSU to bump, set and spike for 16 years.

After posting up an average of 25.47 wins per year, it’s safe to say that Hilbert has acquired some noteworthy titles in his day.

That wall of fame is composed of 16 Coach of the Year Awards from four different classifications that include: Mountain West, Big Sky, WAC and the AVCA.

Earning a Coach of the Year Award would be worthy of a frame and some wall space in any coach’s office. If Hilbert exercised this practice for each of his achievements, there might not be enough room to display his Business Administration degree or any family pictures.

When asked about reaching the 400th win that most coaches will never get to experience, his response was worthy of a nickname more like Humble Hilbert, rather than Titanic Tom.

“I feel like I’m not paying the type of respect to it that maybe it deserves, and I rather it be done at the end of the season or at the end of my career or when I’m dead,” he said.


Certainly there are bigger fish to fry with the Rams now headed to the NCAA Tournament, but their coach’s milestone is worthy of a high five at the very least.

Tom Hilbert is now wearing a 403-103 title at CSU, which puts his winning percentage at 80%. Break these stats down into simple English and it translates into coming out on top of four of five battles he goes into.

I’m no math whiz — but I think anybody has to like their chances with those numbers.

It’s safe to say that the CSU volleyball team is in good hands.

Congrats, Tom.

Quentin Sickafoose is a junior Journalism & Technical Communications major and can be reached at

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