Head Coach Armen Zakarian
Armen Zakarian, a former SBCC and UCSB standout, was hired as head coach of the SBCC men's volleyball team in August of 2010.
Zakarian attended El Cerrito High School, where he played both volleyball and basketball
for the Gauchos. Upon graduation in 2002, he decided to pursue his education at Santa
Barbara City College, where he played volleyball for the Vaqueros in 2004 and 2005.
As a Vaquero, Zakarian was a two-time captain and twice named to the All-Western State
Conference First Team. In 2005, he was named both Santa Barbara City College and Santa
Barbara News-Press Athlete of the Year after helping the Vaqueros earn a league championship
and a berth in the State Final Four.
Zakarian went on to play for the Gauchos at UCSB, where he saw action as both an outside hitter and libero. In his first year as a Gaucho, Zakarian played in 28 of 29 matches, and served as the Gauchos primary libero. He totaled 142 digs and a .957 reception percentage with only 24 errors in 562 attempts. In his final year, Zakarian played as an outside hitter, helping the Gauchos to a semifinal berth in the MPSF playoffs, and a top-5 national ranking to finish the 2007 season.
Zakarian first started coaching in 2004 for the Santa Barbara Boys Volleyball Club.
In 2007, his 16 & Under squad earned a 13th-place finish (open division) at the USA
Junior Olympics. The next year, he led Santa Barbara’s 17 & Under open squad to a
3rd-place finish and Bronze Medal at the USA Junior Olympics held in Sandy, Utah.
In 2008, Zakarian moved to Sacramento to pursue a Master’s Degree in Kinesiology at
Sacramento State. He started coaching for Northern California Volleyball Club in Rocklin,
CA. In 2010, his NCVC 18 & Under boys squad finished as the 2nd-ranked team in the
Northern California Region, and earned an open bid to the USA Junior Olympics. That
same year, Zakarian coached varsity boy’s volleyball at Jesuit High School in Sacramento,
helping the Marauders to a 2010 league championship.
In the summer of 2010, Zakarian was invited to coach with USA Volleyball at the USA High Performance Camps and Championships in Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin. He has also worked as an instructor for UC Santa Barbara Men’s and Women’s Summer Camps, USC Women’s camps, and for Gold Medal Squared as a lead summer camp coach.
Assistant Coach Geoffrey Berz
Geoffrey Berz is a former SBCC Vaquero who played during the 2004 and 2005 seasons. Growing up in Northern California, Geoffrey starred for Foothill High in Pleasanton, CA. During his senior year in 2003, he led the Falcons to a 37-3 record as MVP of their league and helped them to a No. 1 CIF Section ranking. In 2005, while at SBCC, Coach Geoff led the state in both hitting percentage and blocks per game as a middle blocker. The 2005 Vaqueros, a team that included both Berz and Zakarian, captured the WSC title and had the best playoff run in 10 years.
Berz continued his middle blocking for the UCSB men's club team in 2007. After joining the team in late January, Berz quickly pushed the squad upward and excelled at the collegiate club level. That year his Gouchos brought home the D1 AA National Championship. After the 2007 collegiate club season, Geoff shifted his focus to off-court activities. He began coaching vollleyball at the club level for UCSB while working to open a Tiffany & Co. in Santa Barbara and develop the cause-networking organization United Causes.
Geoff has coached at the college level since 2007 and is also a head coach at Cate School in Carpinteria. He brings a critical thinking and statistical edge to SBCC but more importantly to him is the success of each player off the court. He embraces the term student-athlete and, along with head coach Zakarian, Berz is committed to seeing SBCC players excel on and off the court. Transferring to a four year institution and helping as many players as possible play at the next level is more important than anything else. Geoffrey is proud to be the assistant coach and is excited to work with Zakarian as they bring new energy and success to SBCC.