Gooden and Myers receive contract extensions


By Khobi Price

Director of Athletics Sean T. Frazier announced Monday volleyball Head Coach Ray Gooden and women’s cross country Head Coach Adrian Myers received contract extensions.

Gooden is NIU’s longest tenured head coach with 17 seasons at NIU, and his contract amendment keeps him in DeKalb through June 2023, while Myers’ contract has been extended through June 2021.  

“I’m very pleased to announce these contract extensions for Gooden and Myers,” Frazier said, according to a Monday NIU media services news release. “Both have built outstanding programs filled with student-athletes that do things the right waycompete to win championships, graduate student-athletes and serve the community. They are both outstanding leaders who have strong ties to this area, and these extension ensure they will be here at NIU to continue to build on their success going forward.”

Gooden is the volleyball program’s all-time wins leader and finished the 2018 season with a career record of 308-235 at NIU. He notched his 300th win this past season with a sweep of Toledo Sept. 21.

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 Gooden has led NIU to seven 20-plus win seasons and is second among active head coaches in the MAC in career wins and fourth all-time in conference matches won. With Gooden as the head coach, the Huskies have received the American Volleyball Coaches Association Team Academic Award in six of the last seven seasons.

The volleyball team has won five Mid-American Conference West Division titles and three MAC regular season Championships, made two NCAA Tournament bids and Gooden has earned the MAC Coach of the Year honors five times since taking over the program in 2002.

“I’d like to thank Frazier and the NIU community for their continued support of our volleyball program,” Gooden said.

Myers is in his fourth season with the Cross Country and Track & Field programs. The cross country team has earned a top-four finish in each of the last three seasons and has garnered eight All-MAC honors during Myers’ time with the Huskies after never finishing higher than eighth in the MAC Championships prior to him taking over the program.

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 In 2017, Hope Schmelzle became the first Huskie to compete in the NCAA Division I Cross Country Championship and was coached by Myers.

In 2017, Schmelzle was named the MAC Most Outstanding Female Track Athlete of the Year and earned All-America honors with a sixth-place finish in the 3,000-meter steeplechase. Ashley Tutt was named MAC Female Freshman of the Year in both the indoor and outdoor seasons last season.

“I would like to thank Frazier, [Senior Associate Athletic Director and Sports Administrator] Melissa Dawson and [Director of Track and Field/Cross Country] Connie Teaberry for making this happen,” Myers said. “NIU holds a special place in my heart, and we look ahead to the great things for us here in DeKalb. I am excited to continue building a championship culture here at NIU with the Cross Country and Track and Field programs.”