Ronda Shirley is in her first season as the head volleyball coach at USC Upstate. Shirley was named the program’s tenth head coach on January 15, 2019.
Shirley joins the Spartans after accumulating nearly 600 victories at the junior college level and was inducted into the NJCAA Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 2015. She spent the past two seasons as the head coach at Navarro College, where she led the Bulldogs to 65 wins and an appearance in the 2018 NJCAA Division I Volleyball National Championship Tournament.
Shirley guided the Bulldogs to a 38-7 overall record and number four seed in the 2018 NJCAA Division I Volleyball National Championship Tournament. In their first-ever trip to the National Championship Tournament, Navarro advanced to the quarterfinals as she earned AVCA Two-Year College Southwest Region Coach of the Year honors. Shirley led Navarro to a 27-12 record during her first season in 2017, improving the team’s win total by 21 matches from the year prior.
Prior to spending two years as the head coach at Robert E. Lee High School in Texas, Shirley spent five seasons as the head coach at Tyler Junior College. She led Tyler to three Region XIV conference championships and was named Region XIV/District L Coach of the Year in 2012, 2013 and 2014. Tyler made three NJCAA Volleyball National Tournament appearances throughout her tenure, highlighted by a national runner-up finish in 2013. The Apache also recorded a fifth-place finish in 2012 and eight place in 2014.
Shirley amassed 378 wins and a .701 winning percentage, the school’s all-time leader, in 13 seasons as the head coach at Hutchinson Community College in Kansas. A 2017 Hutchinson Community College Hall of Fame inductee, she guided the Blue Dragons to five NJCAA Volleyball Tournament appearances and had a best finish of fifth in 2004. Shirley received numerous Coach of the Year accolades at Hutchinson including Region VI/District M five times, KJCCC in 2004 and AVCA Two-Year College Midwest Region in 2009. Hutchinson won five Region VI championships under Shirley’s direction.
She began her coaching career in 1995 at her alma mater, Brown Mackie, and spent four seasons on the sidelines. Shirley was named the Coach of the Year in 1998.
Over her 19 seasons as a head coach, Shirley has coached five conference Players of the Year and seven conference Freshmen of the Year. She also had 53 All-Conference, 36 All-Region and 15 All-American student-athletes. Her student-athletes have also excelled in the classroom leading to 12 Academic All-Americans.
Shirley is a 1992 graduate of Brown Mackie College in Salina, Kansas and a 1995 graduate of Kentucky Wesleyan. She and her husband, Jeff, have six children.