Benatti named new beach volleyball head coach

Syleena Perez

Sports Editor

CSU Bakersfield named Cesar Benatti as the new head beach volleyball coach for the 2017 season.
CSUB Director of Volleyball Giovana Melo announced on Wednesday that Benatti will take over the position after Olivia Simko stepped down at the end of the 2016 season.
“I am very humbled and honored to have been chosen by Giovana to be the new head beach volleyball coach,” Benatti said to “For me, it is a big win in my career. I have been following Giovana’s methods and helping her on the process of putting philosophies in the indoor program, and we want to have the same for the beach program.”

Cesar Benatti has been the assistant beach volleyball coach for the past two seasons. Photo by
Cesar Benatti has been the assistant beach volleyball coach for the past two seasons.
Photo by

Benatti added that Simko, who was the head coach for the past three seasons, was a very important part of his success.
“I learned a lot from her. She was a great teacher and inspiration,” he said. “The fact that most of our indoor players play beach, makes the process easier and smoother to transition from one to another. I am super excited for this new challenge and can’t wait to start a new season.”
Benatti served as Simko’s assistant for the past two seasons and also as the assistant for Melo and the indoor volleyball team.
He will continue to be the assistant coach for the Roadrunners’ indoor volleyball program.
Melo is thrilled to have Benatti as the head coach.
“We are thrilled to have Cesar take over as the new head beach volleyball coach,” Melo said to “He has always been very dedicated to our volleyball program as an assistant and now I am so excited to watch him run the beach program. Cesar has learned a lot from Olivia Simko over the past couple of years and he has a lot to offer. He is very deserving of this opportunity and I am can’t wait to see what he does with the team.”
From 2002-2009, Benatti was head coach for two universities in Brazil. Benatti then went on to help Melo and the Western Nebraska Community College volleyball program before returning back to Brazil in 2012 to be a head coach for a main volleyball program in São Paulo, Ibirapuera.
Prior to coming to CSUB, Benatti played professionally for Brazil up until 2000 where he then became the assistant coach for Esporte Clube Pinheios, earning two state championships and two Metropolitan championships.