Jim McLaughlin, UW volleyball coach, leaves Huskies for Notre Dame

It’s been rumored for several days, and the University of Washington made it official Friday afternoon.

Huskies volleyball coach Jim McLaughlin, one of the most successful coaches in the history of UW athletics, is leaving the school to become the head coach at Notre Dame.

McLaughlin departs after a 14-year career that yielded a 357-90 record, 13 consecutive NCAA tournament appearances, four trips to the Final Four and the school’s first national championship in 2005.

He was an assistant at Notre Dame in 1996 under coach Debbie Brown, whom UND announced would not return in 2015 after a 24-year career with the Irish.

McLaughlin’s wife is also from the Midwest.

“Jim McLaughlin recently informed us that he was accepting an offer to become the head volleyball coach of the Fighting Irish,” UW athletic director Scott Woodward said in a statement released by the school. “Jim spent time as an assistant coach at Notre Dame, his wife, Margaret, attended UND, and throughout our discussions over the past few days it became very clear that this opportunity provided Jim and his family a unique chance to return to a place of great personal significance to them.”

A native of Malibu, California, McLaughlin was named Pac-12 Coach of the Year four times and coached two National Player of the Year recipients — Courtney Thompson of Kent, and Krista Vansant. Washington finished 31-3 in 2014, winning 30 games in consecutive seasons for the first time in school history.

McLaughlin released a lengthy statement through UW, which included his sentiment that “I will forever be grateful for the time I spent at the University of Washington, and will leave with nothing but fond memories.”