Cindy Gregory recently completed her 13th season at the University of Delaware as head coach Bonnie Kenny’s top assistant during the 2014 season.
Gregory, who was promoted to the position of associate head coach on December, 2004, also served as an assistant under Kenny during her entire tenure at the University of Massachusetts from 1995-2001.
Since coming to Delaware, Gregory has helped the program recapture the glory it once had under legendary coach Barb Viera. Following four losing seasons prior to her arrival, she and Kenny have turned the Blue Hens into one of the top teams in the region.
During her 13 seasons in Newark, Gregory has helped Delaware post a record of 235-171 (.579) and advance to the Colonial Athletic Association Tournament 10 times. In that time, a total of 31 UD student-athletes have been named all-conference, 19 have been named to the CAA All-Tournament team, four have earned All-American honors, eight have earned all-region honors, nine have been named CAA Player of the Year, and six have earned CoSIDA Academic All-District honors. In addition, Kenny has been named CAA Coach of the Year four times.
From 2007 through 2011, the Blue Hens captured a share of five straight CAA regular season titles, won CAA Tournament championships four times, and advanced to the NCAA Tournament in 2007, 2008, 2010, and 2011. The Blue Hens won first round NCAA matches in both 2007 - a first in UD history - and 2011.
Along with winning the conference championship, Gregory helped the 2007 squad post a 31-5 record and advance to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Delaware eventually became the first team from the CAA to win a set in the second round without the benefit of a first round bye. The Hens have since advanced to the NCAA Tournament in both 2008, 2010, 2011.
In 2008, she and Kenny completed an amazing coaching job to guide the team to a second straight title. Despite losing the conference Player and Setter of the Year to graduation and All-Conference performer Kelly Gibson to a knee injury in the first match of the season, Gregory helped the squad overcome the losses and use a late-season run to take the championship.
With the Hens’ grueling 3-2 victory over host and No. 1 seed Northeastern in the CAA Championship match, Delaware became the first team to win back-to-back titles since George Mason accomplished the feat in 2002-03.
After falling in the first round of the NCAA Tournament in 2008, Gregory helped guide an experienced Delaware team to its second regular-season title in three years after finishing tied atop the CAA standings with VCU in 2009. Along with a strong showing in conference action, Delaware also had a memorable night against North Carolina when the team topped the Tar Heels in a thrilling five-set match at the Bob Carpenter Center in front of a record crowd of 2,517.
Highlighted by victories over UNC as well as a slew of Big East schools, Delaware eventually finished the year ranked fifth in the East Region and 43rd in the nation. It marked the highest national finish by a team from the Colonial Athletic Association in four years.
In 2011, the Blue Hens enjoyed another outstanding season, posting a 23-11 record, winning both the CAA regular season and tournament titles, and advancing to the NCAA Tournament where they downed American in the first round before falling to host Penn State in the second round.
Delaware became the first team to capture a share of five straight league titles since George Mason (1992-96) and just narrowly missed making it six straight in 2012 before falling in five sets to Hofstra in the CAA Tournament title game.
A native of Houston, Tex., Gregory earned 13 letters in basketball, cross country, track and field, and volleyball and garnered high school All-American and All-State honors in volleyball at Clear Lake High School.
Gregory began her college career at the University of Houston where she played two seasons and led the Cougars to the 1979 and 1980 national AIAW tournaments. The 1979 squad placed fourth nationally.
She moved on to Missouri State University where she played two seasons and led the team to a fifth place finish at the 1981 AIAW national tournament and to an NCAA Tournament berth in 1982. The squad also captured two Gateway Conference titles during her career.
She earned her degree in physical education with a minor in biology from Missouri State in 1983 and earned a master’s degree in exercise physiology from Texas Woman’s University in 1986.
She began her coaching career as a graduate assistant at Texas Woman’s University in Denton, Tex. in 1984-86 before moving into a head coaching position at Marymount University in Arlington, Va. in 1987-89.
She served as assistant coach at Smith College in Northampton, Mass. in 1989-91 and returned to the head coaching ranks at Clark University in Worcester, Mass. for the 1991-92 season. She also served a two-year stint as head coach at The MacDuffie School in Springfield, Mass. in 1990-92 while also serving at Smith and Clark.
Gregory took over as head coach for men’s and women’s volleyball at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and led both teams to national prominence during her tenure in 1992-95. She guided the men’s program to a third place finish at the NCAA Division III Tournament in 1993.
On the women’s side, she led MIT to the ECAC regional tournament in 1993 and to the New England Women’s Eight Conference title and an NCAA Tournament berth in 1994. She was named the New England Women’s Eight Conference Coach of the Year and New England Women’s Volleyball Association District Coach of the Year in 1993.
While at Massachusetts, she teamed with Kenny to lead UMass to a seven-year record of 125-93 between 1995-2001. Massachusetts recorded five winning seasons, including marks of 28-9 in 1996 and 24-15 in 1995. The 1996 team advanced to the National Invitational Volleyball Championships in Kansas City, Mo.
In addition to her coaching duties, Gregory is active professionally, having published articles in several national journals. She has also been active with the NCAA YES program and with Special Olympics and has served on the Women’s Sports Foundation Advisory Board.
In the fall of 2006, she and Kenny co-authored an instructional book “Volleyball: Steps to Success” published by Human Kinetics Publishers. The 192-page book is part of the popular Steps to Success Sports Series which has sold over 1.5 million copies. The book was designed to help players and coaches master the essentials of the game and offer a comprehensive, progressive approach with a proven system for learning and expert instruction.