LINDA HAMPTON-KEITH | HEAD COACH

In just two seasons leading NC State volleyball, head coach Linda Hampton-Keith has completely transformed the program. In 2018, she led the Wolfpack to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2012 and the Pack earned the program’s first win in the NCAA Championships with a 3-2 victory against Oregon State.
 
NC State broke the program record with 15 ACC wins, headlined by a perfect 10-0 record in ACC home matches for the first time in program history. The Wolfpack opened conference play with an 8-0 record for the first time in the history of the program and NCSU was first or tied for first in the ACC in eight of the 10 weeks of league play.
 
Under her tutelage, a program record five players earned All-ACC honors. Additionally, Julia Brown and Kylie Pickrell were named AVCA All-Americans and Brown was the program’s first AVCA Region Player of the Year honoree.
 
The Wolfpack defeated Duke, UNC-Chapel Hill and Wake Forest in the same season for the first time since 2012. NC State took down in straight sets inside Reynolds Coliseum to record the first sweep against the Blue Devils since 2000.

She and her staff led the 2016 Wolfpack squad to unprecedented territories, highlighted by breaking the program record at the time with 13 Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) wins.
 
The Wolfpack also earned the program’s first top-10 win with a 3-2 victory at Florida State. Additionally, NC State notched the first-ever season sweep versus Miami, picking up its first win in Coral Gables.
 
Hampton-Keith guided the Pack to nine sweeps during the season, including six in conference play which is the most in program history. Under her leadership, Brown and Maggie Speaks became the first duo to garner all-region honors since 1988 and All-ACC honors since 1995.
 
NC State ended her first season with a 20-12 overall record and ranked 66 in the NCAA RPI, after finishing the 2015 campaign at 154 – a jump of nearly 100 spots. She was one of five division I first-year head coaches to lead his/her team to 20 or more wins and the only one in a power five conference.
 

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NC State Director of Athletics Deborah A. Yow solidified the future of the Wolfpack volleyball program on Wednesday, Dec. 23, 2015 announcing Linda Hampton-Keith as the new head coach.
 
“We believe Coach Hampton-Keith is the right architect to build our volleyball program for sustainable success,” said Yow. “Her collegiate coaching experience and work with the USA Volleyball Youth Development Program has prepared her well to lead our program. We welcome Linda, her husband Maark and their daughter Yaeli to the Wolfpack Family.”
 
Hampton-Keith brings a wealth of experience to NC State, including 14 years as an assistant coach at the Division I level, 12 years with the USA Volleyball Development Program and three as a head coach of a varsity program on the high school level.

"I would like to thank Chancellor Randy Woodson and Director of Athletics Debbie Yow for this wonderful opportunity to become the next head coach of NC State Volleyball," said Hampton-Keith. "It became evident throughout this process that there is a commitment to excellence and a culture of teamwork throughout NC State and the athletic department and I am humbled and honored to lead the volleyball program during this exciting time.

"From the moment I stepped on campus it became clear that under Dr. Yow’s leadership NC State athletics has moved in a direction that supports success at the highest levels.  I am looking forward to partnering with the administration, our staff and our team to move our volleyball program in a direction befitting of the NC State vision."
 
She joins the Pack following a five-year stint at Arizona State, serving as associate head coach in her final three seasons. She helped guide the Sun Devils to NCAA Tournament appearances in each of the past four seasons, and reached as high as No. 5 in the national rankings in 2015 after a 15-0 start.
 
Known as a relentless recruiter, she has enhanced the Sun Devils’ recruiting efforts resulting in nationally-ranked classes in four of her five years in Tempe. ASU’s 2013 recruiting class was tabbed No. 13 in the nation by PrepVolleyball.com, one of the highest in program history.
 
During her time with the Sun Devils, the program produced two All-Americans, two all-region performers, five All-Pac 12 selections and four Pac 12 All-Freshman Team members.
 
Hampton-Keith has also worked closely with the nation’s top youth players through the USA Volleyball Youth Development Programs. She coached at USA High Performance camps from 2001-05, served as head coach for the USA Volleyball North Texas Region Team in 2007, assisted the Youth National A2 Team in 2009, and most recently assisted the USA Collegiate National Team in 2013 and 2014.
 
Prior to joining Arizona State, Hampton-Keith spent six seasons as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at Texas Christian University. While in Fort Worth, she helped the Horned Frogs post four consecutive winning seasons and earn their first NCAA Tournament appearance in 2009, which included a 3-0 victory against Rice in the first round.
 
In her last three seasons at TCU, the Horned Frogs charted 20 or more wins in each campaign, highlighted by a program-best 27 victories in 2009. Hampton-Keith helped three players from the ’09 squad earn All-America honors.
 
Under her tutelage, Christy Hudson was a three-time all-conference selection and All-American, while Megan Munce claimed Mountain West Conference (MWC) Setter of the Year honors. In total, four players secured All-America honors, four all-region selections and seven Mountain West All-Conference honors during her tenure with the Horned Frogs.
 
Hampton-Keith was an assistant coach at North Texas in 2005, after spending the previous two years as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at her alma mater Florida International.
 
Before assuming her position with the Panthers, she was the head coach at P.K. Yonge High School, guiding the team to three consecutive state final four appearances, including the 2000 Florida State Championship – the first in school history. She  coached and developed 10 All-State selections, including the Florida State Player of the Year, and was named Florida High School Coach of the Year for her accomplishments.
 
A native of Gainesville, Fla., Hampton-Keith graduated from Florida International with a Bachelor of Science degree in psychology. She and her husband Maark are the parents of a daughter, Yaeli.
 
What They’re Saying About Coach Hampton-Keith
 
Jason Watson, Arizona State Head Coach
"I'm excited for Linda and the student-athletes at NC State.  They are going to experience what I've come to greatly respect.  Linda will be good for her athletes.  She is going to help them become great volleyball players and even better people.  I will miss the opportunity to interact with her on a daily basis.  She helped us elevate our program at ASU and has made me a much better Head Coach."
 
Kathy DeBoer, AVCA Executive Director
"What a great hire by NC State! Linda Hampton-Keith is one of our bright, young stars.  She has paid her dues as an assistant, she has seized leadership opportunities with our Minority Coaches group, she has been deliberate in her search for the right fit and has found it!"

Mary Wise, University of Florida Head Coach 
"For some time now it was clear Linda was more than ready to be a head coach. The only question was which school was going to be fortunate enough to entice her away from the great situation she had at ASU. NC State and Linda Hampton-Keith are a perfect fit. The school, the fans, and soon the players, will see what a terrific person and coach they have in her."

Kimberly Johnson, Senior Associate AD / Senior Woman Administrator at TCU
"Linda Hampton-Keith is a rising star. She is highly motivated and committed to excellence.  She will be a tremendous asset to the Wolfpack."

ALISON LYNE | DIRECTOR OF WOLFPACK VOLLEYBALL CAMPS/DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS
 
Alison is in her 3rd year working with our camps and oversees the daily operations of our camp. 
COOKIE STEVENS | ASSISTANT COACH
Dulcie (Cookie) Stevens is in her second season as an assistant coach on head coach Linda Hampton-Keith's staff. In her first season, she helped lead NC State to its first NCAA Tournament win in program history and first appearance in the NCAA Championships since 2012.
 
She was was also responsible for helping lead the Wolfpack to a program record 15 ACC wins and an unbeaten 10-0 ACC record in home matches for the first time in program history.
 
Stevens works primarily with the middle blockers and under her leadership, Kaitlyn Kearney broke the program record for career blocks (556) and was also named a Second Team All-ACC Selection.
 
A 35-year coaching veteran, Stevens has coached in three NCAA Final Fours and 12 NCAA Tournaments.
 
Additionally, she owns six years of division I head coaching experience.
 
“I’m thrilled that Cookie is joining our Wolfpack Family,” said Hampton-Keith. “She’s the perfect fit at the perfect time for our program. She embodies everything we stand for in the culture we are building and she is an unbelievably talented and knowledgeable coach. Our team is so lucky to have her as a resource on the court and in life.”
 
When Hampton-Keith was a student at Florida International University (FIU), Stevens contacted her to be an assistant coach for the Panthers. She gladly accepted the offer and was an assistant coach, while also working toward her degree as a full-time student.
 
From that experience, Hampton-Keith knew that she wanted to pursue a career in coaching.
 
“I’m very excited to join this program,” said Stevens. “I’ve known Linda for more than 15 years and she’s a woman of integrity. I’m so impressed with Kevin [Campbell], the staff and the facilities. We both have a strong passion for the sport of volleyball and empowering women, so I’m excited to be a part of the Pack.”
 
Stevens joins NC State after serving as an assistant coach at national powerhouse, Southern California, for 10 seasons. During her time with the Trojans, USC reached three finals fours, the NCAA Tournament each season and finished the year ranked among the top 25 of the final American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) poll every year.
 
“Cookie has coached where we want to go,” Hampton-Keith added. “She has been to multiple NCAA tournaments and three final fours. Her experience will prove invaluable as we continue reaching to achieve the vision of this program.”
 
USC compiled a 245-81 overall record during Stevens’ 10-year tenure with the Trojans, highlighted by a 130-58 mark in Pac 12 Conference play. She helped the squad win the conference championship in 2011, reach the final four and finish the year ranked No. 3 in the final poll.
 
The 2011 campaign saw the squad break the program record for conference wins with 20 and head coach Mick Haley earned the AVCA’s National Coach of the Year honor. In addition, USC also had the national player of the year and conference most valuable player (MVP) Alex Jupiter, Pac-12 Setter of the Year Kendall Bateman and conference libero of the year Natalie Hagglund.
 
Under her tutelage, USC’s players garnered 23 All-America mentions, 25 all-region selections and 32 were named to the all-conference team.
 
Prior to her time in Los Angeles, Stevens was the head coach at FIU for six seasons. She helped the Panthers earn their first NCAA Tournament berth in 2001 after winning the Sun Belt Conference Tournament to claim an automatic bid.
 
FIU charted a 3-0 sweep against UCF in the first round to tally the program’s first NCAA Tournament victory. The Panthers fell in the following round to Florida, but ended the year at 24-8, one of the most successful seasons in program history.
 
Stevens was named the AVCA South Region Coach of the Year and also garnered Sun Belt Coach of the Year honors following that season. FIU notched 1,945 kills in 2001, which still stands as the program record for most kills in a single season.
 
With her guidance, Nirvana Kos was a two-time All-Sun Belt Conference First Team selection and secured 2001 tournament MVP honors.
 
Before assuming the position at FIU, Stevens spent two years at Westminster Christian School and 16 years as the head coach at Miami Dade Community College. While coaching the Sharks, she helped the program win two National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) championships.
 
She collected numerous coach of the year honors, headlined by the NJCAA Coach of the Year awards in 1989 and 1986. Additionally, Stevens was the AVCA junior college Coach of the Year in 1988.
 
Stevens coached 18 junior college All-Americans, four NJCAA National Tournament MVPs and three Academic All-Americans while winning eight consecutive state championships and two national titles.
 
She played collegiately at Miami Dade Community College for two seasons before transferring to San Diego State where she played her final two seasons of eligibility. Stevens earned All-America, all-conference honors and was voted the team’s MVP as a senior.
 
Stevens earned her bachelor’s degree in liberal arts from FIU and master’s degree in physical education from Nova Southeastern University.
 
She is married to Peter Stevens and the couple has two sons, Sam and Tyler. Sam played collegiate volleyball at Ohio State and Tyler played at USC. Stevens is the proud grandmother to Elayna Ann Stevens, Sam’s daughter.