Coach Raphael enters his fourth season at the helm of the Bethune-Cookman University’s, NCAA Division I, volleyball program. With a young but athletic volleyball team, Coach Raphael is ready to lead the Lady Wildcats into unchartered territory, a Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference and bid to the NCAA Tournament. With a combined conference record of 16-14 in the last three seasons, B-CU is ready to make a serious MEAC Tournament run this season.
“I am very excited to be at Bethune-Cookman University with this young team” said Coach Raphael,” and I am very excited for the challenge of getting this program to the top of the MEAC.”
USA Volleyball – Florida Region
In addition to countless hours at B-CU, Raphael has taken the time to be an active coach in the Florida Region of USA Volleyball. He was named the Florida Region’s Outstanding Junior’s Coach (17U-18U Division) in 2009, and received the region’s Outstanding Service Award in 2012. He has participated in the Team Florida High performance program for the last seven years, a program that builds a national pipeline of junior volleyball athletes and coaches. Raphael guided the Team Florida Girls’ National Select Team to a gold medal at the 2013 USA High Performance (HP) Championships in Ft. Lauderdale.
In 2012 and 2013 Raphael was an assistant coach of the Women’s Team Florida Wave professional team, of the new Premier Volleyball League (PVL), a pro volleyball league sanctioned by USA Volleyball.
Raphael was the Founder and Director of The Volleyball Academy at Winter Springs (TVA-WS), one of the premier clubs in Florida. Always notably strong, TVA has won numerous tournaments including bids to USA Volleyball Junior Olympics. TVA has prepared numerous athletes for college scholarships including schools such as Harvard, LSU, USC Aiken, and Eastern Carolina.
Previous Coaching Experience
Raphael comes to the Lady Cats from Florida International (FIU), where he was the setters coach for the Panthers, coaching All-Sunbelt selection Natalia Valentin. Prior to working at FIU, Raphael led his last three high school setters to scholarships at Florida Southern, Palm Beach Atlantic and Louisiana State (LSU). During his time coaching setters at FIU, the Panthers were 20-11.
The St. Croix, USVI (U.S. Virgin Islands) native, coached at Winter Springs High School for eight years, with seven years as head coach, leading the team to five district championships, two regional championships, and a state runner-up finish. He has coached numerous high school players to collegiate scholarships including, All-American and 2009 ACC Player of the Year, Brianna Barry.
Raphael is a UCF graduate (BS Mathematics Education) and has earned his Corporate MBA at FIU. He and his wife, Jacqueline, reside in Winter Springs, FL, with their five children, Mwai, Imani, Ishaq, Ismaiil, and Sky.