2019 Athletics Hall of Fame: Gloria Coughlin

I was hired at Moraine Valley as head
volleyball coach, and as a couple years went by, I started learning that the
athletes were asking me for advice on majors and courses and schedules. And so
then I trained as an academic advisor and was part-time advisor for the
athletes as well as head volleyball coach. That then moved into a full-time
advising position in the Athletic Department because we had so many
athletes that needed help. We were in the N4C conference and we went undefeated in
the conference, my first year, and I had eight players. So the old-timers like
Lisa Drzewiecki, she was amazing and she was on my first teams, and you know
that got the ball rolling here that we were a success. They were all wondering
why I didn’t get Coach of the Year that year in the conference, but you had to
wait your turn in the N4C. So, we waited a few years before I got it. The
best part of coaching is seeing the progress that each student-athlete
makes, the little things, and as they grow as a person because between that you
know 17 and 19 or 20 years of age they really do grow and become adults, and I
really enjoyed watching that and being a part of it. We had a men’s volleyball
team here for a short time, maybe 1996 to 2000, 2001, maybe. And, the area at the time,
the district schools high schools were very strong in boys volleyball, and those
guys just couldn’t wait to come here for me to put up the net and let them play.
The men’s team was very, very good. Now there weren’t a lot of colleges that we
could play against, but we found them and we were very successful. I
wanna say we had we went like 34 and four our first season or something similar to
that. But after four years my daughters were playing college
volleyball and high school volleyball, and I wanted I started to feel like I wasn’t
entirely with my daughters. And so I took a break from coaching, and at that time
we dropped men’s volleyball and picked up cross country, which is a great thing
for the college. I miss being in the gym, but I’ve been able to come back and do
some scoring for the women’s volleyball team at home games, and that’s kind of
scratched my itch a little bit. But, I do miss coming to the Athletic Department
and just the smiles on everyone’s faces that we love what we do, and we love the
kids. When I first heard that I was going to be inducted into the Hall of Fame, I
was first honored. Second, it wasn’t my time. There are so many people that
deserve this in front of me, but I’m truly, truly honored. [music playing]

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