Montreal·Profile

Quebec father-son duo head to Rio with Canada's men's volleyball team

When the men's volleyball team locked up its berth for the Olympic Games in Rio, the team's youngest player, Nicholas Hoag, didn't have to go far to celebrate with his father.

Nicholas Hoag intent on making the podium, as Team Canada heads to Olympics for 1st time since 1992

Nicholas Hoag (right) spikes the ball during the FIVB World Championships match between Cuba and Canada on Sept. 10, 2014 in Wroclaw, Poland. (Piotr Hawalej/Getty Images for FIVB)

Get to know Quebec's athletes heading to the Olympic Games in Rio this summer. Here's the start of our series of profiles on our local athletes as they get ready to compete.


When the men's volleyball team locked up its berth for the Olympic Games in Rio, the team's youngest player, Nicholas Hoag, didn't have to go far to celebrate with his father.

Glenn Hoag of Gatineau, Que., has been coaching the national team for more than 10 years.

Nicholas says that father-son, coach-player relationship was not always easy, especially when he was first named to the team.

"If I had a hard practice one day, I had a hard time speaking with him after, outside practice," he told CBC Montreal's Daybreak

"If we had dinner together or something. it was hard for me to speak to my dad at that point and not my coach."­ 

Canada's men's volleyball team has qualified for the Olympic Games for the first time since 1992. 3:54

Canada's 1st family of volleyball

Volleyball may not be a marquee sport in Canada, but no one told the Hoag family that.

Nicholas is following directly in the footsteps of his dad. who played on Canada's Olympic volleyball team in Los Angeles in 1984, when Canada finished just out of the medals, in fourth spot.

Coach Glenn has another son, Christopher, who plays pro and practises with the national team, and Nicholas and Christopher's mom, Donna (Kastelic) Hoag, was on the national team after a successful university career.

Nicholas Hoag is pictured here with his father and coach, Glenn Hoag, at the Volleyball Men's World Championship in Poland in 2014. (FIVB)


Team Canada has never surpassed that fourth place finish in 1984. This year is the first time Canada has even qualified for an Olympic berth since Barcelona in 1992.

There, the team had to settle for a 10th place finish. Nicholas says this August, Team Canada is intent on making the podium.

The team's strength comes not only from the international coaching experience Hoag brought to the table but also the increased financial support that began in 2013, which included $1 million from the Own The Podium program.

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