Debbie Humphreys just completed her 29th season as Stephen F. Austin head volleyball coach and is one of the most successful coaches in the game today. By guiding the Ladyjacks to the 20-win plateau for the 20th time during the 2016 season, Humphreys upped her career win total to 636 to become one of only 20 active NCAA Division I volleyball coaches who have amassed 600 or more career victories. Currently the 19th-winningest active coach in the nation, Humphreys owns an impressive .659 winning percentage in her 29-year SFA career. The past two seasons have seen the Ladyjacks finish 2nd & 3rd in the Southland Conference.
Humphreys led her team to one of the best seasons in program history in 2014 as SFA won its eighth Southland Conference Championship with a perfect 16-0 record. The Ladyjacks rolled through the conference slate with 13 sweeps in 16 matches and posted the first undefeated league mark and first outright SLC title for SFA since 2006. Humphreys' squad won 17 straight matches to end the regular season -- the fifth-longest winning streak in the nation over the stretch.
The Ladyjacks raked in numerous honors and accolades following the season as five SFA athletes were named to the All-Southland Conference teams, including Paige Holland as the SLC Setter of the Year. For the fifth-time in her decorated career, Humphreys was named the Katrinka Jo Crawford SLC Coach of the Year at the conclusion of the season. She has claimed the league's top coaching honor more than any other active coach.
SFA has been exceptional in Southland Conference play in Humphreys' tenure. Humphreys led the Ladyjacks to a new Southland Conference record from the 2004-2007 seasons as the Ladyjacks racked up 62 consecutive SLC wins over those four years, eclipsing the old record of 58 that was set by UT-Arlington in the early 1990s.
Her Ladyjacks made school history in 2006, posting a 31-4 record that ranks second all-time at SFA behind only the Ladyjacks' 32-4 mark in 1994. Incidentally, the `94 campaign marked SFA's first trip to the NCAA Tournament. The Ladyjacks again reached volleyball's big dance in 2006 and did something no other SFA team had ever done -- win a first-round match.
The Ladyjacks knocked off Alabama, 3-2, to record the first NCAA Tournament victory in program history, putting an exclamation point on a season for the ages. The 2006 slate included a second straight undefeated SLC run, as the Ladyjacks went 16-0 against league competition on their way to a third straight conference championship. The team surpassed 2005's 21-match win streak with a 26-match run in 2006, and one year later in 2007 brought home its fourth straight title with a 15-1 record in league play.
The Ladyjacks have continued their winning ways once they reach the postseason. SFA has compiled a 27-24 (.530) all-time Southland Conference Tournament record, making 12 appearances in the conference championship match. SFA ranks first in both tournament wins (27) and championship appearances (12) among active league members.
Humphreys' squads have recorded three 30-win seasons (1994, 1995, 2006), been to the NCAA Tournament four times (1994, 1997, 1999, 2006) and to the NIVC tournament twice (1993, 1995). The Ladyjacks have won eight Southland Conference regular-season and four tournament titles during that same stretch. The SLC has recognized Humphreys for her accomplishments on five separate occasions, naming her the SLC Coach of the Year in 1992, 1994, 2004, 2006 and 2014.
Humphreys has produced some of the league's top talent in her 25-plus seasons. During that time she has coached 71 All-Southland Conference selections, six SLC Player of the Year honorees, five SLC Freshman of the Year picks, three Setter of the Year choices and each of the first four SLC Libero of the Year awards that the conference began in 2004.
The Ladyjacks are not just recognized for their achievements on the court. The SFA volleyball team has also been recognized nationally for its academic performance, with five players being named to Academic All-America teams, including 2014 selection Paige Holland. The Ladyjacks were also honored with the prestigious AVCA National Team Academic Award for six straight seasons. The AVCA Team Academic Award is an honor given to volleyball programs at the collegiate and high school level that maintain a 3.30 cumulative grade-point average. The 2002 Ladyjack squad was one of only seven to receive the honor in four consecutive seasons.
A native of Rochester, Illinois, Humphreys received her bachelor's degree in physical education from Texas Tech in 1986 and her master's degree in exercise physiology in 1988. Humphreys was a three-year letterwinner for the Lady Raider volleyball team, where she earned All-Southwest Conference honors and was named team MVP as a senior. Also a stellar student-athlete, Humphreys was a finalist for academic All-America honors.
Humphreys is a member of the American Volleyball Coaches Association, has served a term as the SLC representative on the AVCA Head Coaches Committee and is currently representing the SLC on the AVCA All-Region Awards Committee. At the 1998-99 Ladyjacks Awards Banquet, Humphreys was named to the SFA Hall of Honor for her accomplishments at SFA.
Humphreys and her husband, Richard, have two children: Regan and Will.