Matt Werle was named the third head coach in Grand Canyon men's volleyball program history on May 2, 2016. With one season as interim head coach in 2016, Werle is entering his fifth season at the helm of the program in 2020.
Werle guided his first three GCU teams to 17 wins or more each year and an overall 54-34 record (.628). In 2017, the Lopes were ranked in the national top 15 in each week of their 18-11 season and finished at No. 14. It was GCU's first season in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation, which put six teams in the final national top 15.
In 2017, the Lopes finished with a program-best record of 19-11 with 11 wins in Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association play. Under Werle's leadership, the team earned a national ranking for the first time in 2017 when it landed at No. 14. The Lopes hosted a home MIVA playoff game for the first time in five years and advanced to the championship with wins over McKendree and Lewis. This was the last season in the MIVA.
GCU started the 2016 season 5-0 and later added three huge wins over nationally ranked opponents. The Lopes knocked off No. 8 Ball State, No. 13 Lewis, and No. 12 Loyola Chicago en route to their first 17-win season since 2013. Outside hitters Gerrard Lipscombe and Shalev Saada were named to the All-MIVA first team.
In addition to serving as the interim coach at GCU in 2016, Werle was also head women's volleyball coach at Mesa Community College. He joined MCC in 2014 following his first three seasons on the GCU men's volleyball staff. Werle served as a graduate assistant for the Lopes in 2012 and 2013, before being added as assistant coach in 2014.
Werle played volleyball at Juniata College, where he helped lead the Eagles to three Division III national titles. A four-year starting setter, Werle was a four-time All-American and the American Volleyball Coaches Association Division III National Player of the Year in 2007.
A native of Meadville, Penn., Werle played two years with the junior national team and was Team USA's starting setter for the 2007 Junior World Championships. He trained one season with the men's national team in 2010.
A 2009 graduate of Juniata, Werle earned a degree in business administration before earning his graduate degree in business administration with an emphasis in leadership from GCU in 2013.
Werle also had success at the club coaching level as he led the top 18-year old club boys team, Arizona Fear Volleyball Club for four years and also assisted with 17UA and 18UA girls teams at Spiral Volleyball Club in Chandler, Ariz., in 2014-15.