Carroll ISD has hired one of the state’s premier volleyball coaches to lead the program.
Lucas Lovejoy’s Ryan Mitchell takes over the Carroll Lady Dragons after building Lovejoy High School into a state powerhouse with five consecutive state championships in Class 3A and 4A over seven seasons.
Mitchell went 315-41 at Lovejoy and led the new program to its first state title in 2008, which ignited a run of dominance in 3A. Lovejoy won four consecutive 3A titles and Mitchell earned numerous state and national accolades along the way.
After moving up in classification, Lovejoy – located east of Allen – went 48-4 and won a 4A title in 2012 and Mitchell was named LoneStarVolleyball.com Coach of the Year.
Mitchell was named Dallas Morning News Coach of the Year in 2008 and in 2011 he was selected NFHS National High School Coach of the Year.
“We are very excited about Coach Mitchell joining the Dragon Family and replicating the legacy that he built at Lovejoy ISD in Southlake,” said Kevin Ozee, Carroll Athletics Director. “I’d like to thank our interview committee, current players, principals, and administration as this hire was a true team effort. We had one of the most talented candidate pools for the head volleyball position that I have ever seen for a coaching search and that is a credit to Carroll ISD, our coaches, and our student-athletes’ commitment to excellence.
“Back in late January, I met with the current players and they helped to build a profile of our ideal candidate. I believe that with Coach Mitchell’s hire we have exceeded the profile and we are in for great things to come. Ryan was also the assistant athletic director in Lovejoy so we are also gaining a head coach with valuable administrative experience.”
Mitchell started his head coaching career at Irving Nimitz in 2004 and also served five years as an assistant at Hebron. He played setter on the Dallas Baptist University volleyball team and spent one year as a student assistant at DBU before starting his career in 2001.
Mitchell was one of five candidates to interview.
The Lady Dragons are coming off their first trip to the state tournament in Class 5A. Carroll was a 5A state semifinalist and went 48-2. Following the season, district officials decided to go in a new direction at head coach and Arthur Stanfield did not return after five seasons. Carroll has two state tournament appearances in the program’s history – 1998 (Class 4A) and 2013 (5A).
Mitchell, who started the Lovejoy program in 2007, also coaches in the Skyline Juniors Volleyball Club in Plano and currently lives in McKinney and has two sons Reid (8) and Eli (6).