Ball State Volleyball coach Steve Shondell agreed to a contract extension Tuesday Jan. 22, 2013. DN PHOTO SARAH GUESS
WOMEN'S VOLLEYBALL: Steve Shondell inducted to Burris Athletics Hall of Fame
The name Shondell is synonymous with Ball State volleyball.
Currently representing the family name in the Ball State volleyball department is Steve Shondell, son of Don Shondell, the inaugural coach of the men’s team in 1960. Steve Shondell became the coach of the women’s team at the university after his 34-year tenure at Burris, where he was inducted into the Athletics Hall of Fame on Tuesday.
“It’s somewhat surreal,” Steve Shondell said. “To be recognized as the first person ever to go into that hall of fame, when you consider all of the great athletes that have come through the school and the outstanding coaches, it’s just a tremendous honor.”
Burris athletic director Chad Wlodarek introduced Steve Shondell Tuesday to a crowd of supporters at the induction ceremony.
“My assistant was standing next to me holding the plaque, and we were both, when Steve was talking, just getting goosebumps,” Wlodarek said. “He still has that passion about Burris and still cares.”
Steve Shondell led the Owls to a 1,183-95 record. He was the coach of 21 state championships, including 13 consecutive at the class 2A level. Steve Shondell also captured four national championships.
Steve Shondell’s individual accolades included twice being named National High School Coach of the year. He was also inducted into the American Volleyball Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 2007.
Four years earlier, Don Shondell preceded his son as a member of the AVCA Hall of Fame. During his 39-year coaching tenure at Ball State, Don Shondell led the Cardinals to 18 conference championships and 13 final four appearances.
In 2009, the Muncie Burris Owls finished the volleyball season with a perfect 40-0 record while finishing as the national runner-up.
This season was also the end of one of the most renowned high school coaching tenures in state history.
Steve Shondell was named the head women’s volleyball coach at Ball State University in April of 2010. Despite previous success, Steve Shondell was slightly concerned about beginning a college coaching career at such a late age.
“The first year went extremely well, and I felt like the girls really accepted me that first year,” he said. “I’ve been able to establish really good relationships with I think every player that’s ever come through the program.”
In his first season at Ball State, Steve Shondell led the Cardinals to a 24-5 mark, including a 14-2 Mid-American Conference record. The team captured the regular season title.
Since then, Steve Shondell has guided Ball State to an NCAA At-Large Berth in 2011 and a MAC West Division Co-Championship in 2013. He has accumulated 90 wins in his time at Ball State, averaging about 22 wins per season prior to this year.
He has coached many players over the years, and said it is a satisfying feeling to see his former high school and club players stay in Delaware County and attend Ball State. Sophomore defensive specialist Nikki Box played her freshman year at Burris for Steve Shondell in his last season.
“I think he really makes me value and respect the game a lot more than any other coach,” Box said. “He really makes me realize that I should not take it for granted because anybody can go out and play volleyball.”