Former Divison II volleyball head coach joins Huskies staff

NIU women’s volleyball head coach Sondra Parys announced Thursday that Ross Kessler will be joining the volleyball staff.

Kessler has over 18 years of coaching experience. His recent stint as head coach was at Divison II Newberry College in South Carolina. 

“I’m very excited to welcome Ross to our Huskie Family,” Parys said. “He comes to us with a wealth of experience, including the last five seasons as a head coach. Our values are aligned, and we share a vision for what we are trying to build here at NIU. It was very clear throughout the interview process that his work ethic and experience will add tremendous value to our program. I can’t wait for Ross to start working with our team and staff.”

Kessler isn’t a stranger to Division I volleyball as he was an assistant coach at Arkansas State University in 2017. His role as coach was to scout opponents and game plan. 

Under Kessler’s coaching, setter Ellie Watkins was named to Second Team All-Sun Belt Conference as she averaged 11.07 assists per-set which was ranked first in the league and 26h in the nation. 

Kessler helped Arkansas State achieve a 21-12 overall mark and had his team qualified for the National Invitational Volleyball Championship that year and won the opening round against SIUE, 3-1. 

“I am truly humbled and honored to have been selected to join the NIU volleyball program,” Kessler said. “Everyone I’ve spoken to has raved about coach Parys, not only as an accomplished coach, but as a wonderful human being. From our first conversation, I felt connected to her and her vision for Huskie volleyball. She is an outstanding leader and I’m beyond thankful to be a part of her team.”