LSU plans to add sand volleyball program

Thousands of LSU fans head to the beach every summer. Starting in 2014, LSU will be bringing a little of the beach to its fans.

Athletic Director Joe Alleva said the school will be adding women’s sand volleyball to its sports lineup for the fall of 2014. It’s the first time LSU has added a sport since softball was revived in 1997 after a 16-year hiatus. Sand volleyball will give LSU 19 varsity sports.

Alleva, who made the announcement at Monday’s LSU Tiger Tour stop at the Lod Cook Alumni Center, said the new sport should enhance LSU’s volleyball program.

“Players on the volleyball team can play on the sand volleyball team,” he said. “If you’re a star volleyball player, the opportunity to play both is attractive. It’s like running indoor and outdoor track.”

Alleva said LSU will convert W.T. “Dub” Robinson Tennis Stadium into a facility for the new sport. The men’s and women’s tennis programs will move into a new facility on Gourrier Avenue across from Alex Box Stadium, though Alleva didn’t give a date for when it would open.

Currently, sand volleyball is not a Southeastern Conference nor NCAA championship sport. Only two schools in Louisiana have programs: Tulane and Louisiana-Monroe.