Hawaii men’s volleyball: Investigation into Charlie Wade over

Hawaii coach Charlie Wade looked on during a timeout against Charleston in the 2020 season opener Jan. 3. / Photo by Steven Erler, Special to the Star-Advertiser

The following was reported in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser’s breaking news on Monday afternoon.

Hawaii men’s volleyball coach Charlie Wade has been cleared by the U.S. Center for SafeSport after a 17-month investigation into a sexual misconduct allegations regarding an underage female player during his club coaching days in the 1990s.

Wade’s name was removed from the USA Volleyball’s interim measure-suspension list over the weekend.

His name was listed under “pending investigation” starting in September 2018 but, because no action was taken, it is no longer part of the record under USA Volleyball’s Minor Athlete Abuse Prevention Policies. The investigation did not become publicly known until late April when the Orange County (Calif.) Register published an article about it, a week before the semifinals of the NCAA volleyball tournament in Long Beach, Calif.

“At this point I’m going to let the university respond,” Wade said prior to today’s practice. “I’m thrilled they found nothing to the allegations. I’m glad it’s over. I’m focused on coaching my team.”

The top-ranked Rainbow Warriors (5-0) leave Tuesday for their first road trip of the season. Hawaii plays at No. 5 Lewis Friday in Romeoville, Ill., then at No. 12 Loyola-Chicago on Saturday.

“We appreciate what SafeSport was established to do, and we believe this outcome is the right result,” University of Hawaii spokesman Dan Meisenzahl said in a statement emailed to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. “The way this situation was handled, though, was not fair for Coach Charlie Wade, his program, and his teams. Safesport did not follow its own policies when it comes to implementing interim measures.

“His name, reputation, and ability to recruit were diminished for months while the process ensued, and the timing of the publication of the allegations (as the University of Hawaii menʻs volleyball team was preparing to compete for the national championship) seemed malicious and without any regard for individuals involved, including our players.”

Hawaii lost to Long Beach State in the finals of the 2019 NCAA championship tournament in May.

When asked if the university would pursue further action, legal or otherwise, Meisenzahl said, “all options remain on the table. We haven’t made a decision at this point.”

A statement from USA Volleyball said the organization had received notice from SafeSport that the matter was closed, leading to Wade’s name being removed.

The move also clears the way for Wade to receive the 2019 American Volleyball Coaches Association’s Coach of the Year Award, which had been held up pending the investigation.


  1. Matt January 13, 2020 7:48 pm

    Well…good to see that Charlie Wade won’t be the plague of our men’s volleyball program now that the charges are cleaned out of him. But it’s not going to make it easy for Nick Rolovich now being the HC for Washington State. We get to keep our MVB coach, and now we lose our football coach.

    Oh well…let’s see if our MVB team can get a chance to make a big statement run into the BWC and NCAA tournament. Let’s go Bows!


  2. Big Island Volleyball Fan January 14, 2020 7:53 am

    This comment is not about Charlie Wade, but this was the only opportunity for me since all your previous comments are closed and I did not watch or listen to last weekend’s matches live.

    My question is related to live broadcasts. Cindy, I noticed that you did not mention at this weekend that online video broadcasts were for mainland viewers. Did Spectrum Sports resume live broadcast viewing rights for anybody in Hawaii as well? I read in your commentary that they are now allowing Hawaii Telcom subscribers to watch volleyball online. If that’s true that they broadened their viewership, I suspect it’s only because they are negotiating a new contract with UH that is up in June and once they sign, they’ll go back to excluding us. What’s your opinion on this? I really don’t trust Spectrum Sports. UH needs to write in their new contract that everyone has access to online broadcasts no matter where they live and that this cannot change arbitrarily.. I might visit UH in April and let the athletic department know how strongly I feel about this.

  3. Cindy Luis January 14, 2020 12:09 pm

    2. simply forgot to type “mainland viewers”
    plus the first match was open to anyone via Big West since it wasn’t being televised by Spectrum.
    my opinion? it is too bad that Hawaii residents are excluded, particularly those on neighbor islands who cannot get Spectrum as their provider.
    You are welcome to let the athletic department know of your feelings. you can always email Dave Matlin now.

  4. AdmrVT January 14, 2020 12:18 pm

    Curious. What policies did Safesports not follow, and what was the consequence?

    If true, this failure should be reported to Congress, who created this entity.

  5. Cindy Luis January 14, 2020 12:37 pm

    new thread up with links to Warrior matches Friday and Saturday.
    4. it was a quote from UH that was referencing last month’s presentation by SafeSport at the U.S. Hunter Jumper Association (horses).
    I think in regards to Wade’s situation, there were delays in following up on the allegations, contacting and interviewing the claimant as well as Wade. My understanding is that Wade wasn’t interviewed for over a year after the initial complaint.
    There may be an issue over the interim suspension measure which was put in place but, when reading the guidelines, may have not been correctly applied.

  6. Big Island Volleyball Fan January 14, 2020 7:21 pm

    3. Thank you, Cindy, for answering my question. It sounded too good to be true that suddenly Spectrum Sports would allow everyone to watch their sports. Also, thanks for providing Matlin’s email address.

Comments are closed.