John Shondell is a Legend in the Volleyball World
John Shondell has been a beloved high school volleyball coach and former Ball State men’s head coach for decades, remaining part of the volleyball family through generations. His son Dave serves as Purdue women’s head coach while brother John serves as an assistant and daughter Kim coaches youth volleyball.
After graduating from Ball State in 1956, he founded the first men’s club team at the university and spent four years advocating for its inclusion on campus. During his 34 seasons leading the program, he won 769 matches–the second-most in NCAA men’s volleyball history–and 13 MIVA tournament championships.
Early Life and Education
In the first eight years of life, children undergo critical brain development. This period can be greatly shaped by experiences, environments and relationships they are exposed to.
Research has demonstrated the importance of providing children with healthy and positive environments during their formative years, as it affects their cognitive development, social emotional well-being and overall health. When these elements are available to children, they tend to make better progress academically, develop stronger cognitive abilities and overall well-being.
In addition to a safe environment, children benefit from stable and responsive relationships with their parents or primary caregivers. This bond can lay the foundation for lifelong learning opportunities.
John Shondell’s professional career spans far beyond his role as head coach of Purdue women’s volleyball team. A former player, he has extensive coaching and administrative experience on the club volleyball circuit.
He has served as an assistant coach at Ball State, Purdue and North Texas, and served as associate head coach at Gardner Webb University for two seasons.
In his 20th season as head coach, Shondell has guided the Boilermakers’ volleyball program to 13 NCAA Tournament appearances (including seven Sweet 16s and two Elite Eights). He has transformed Holloway Gymnasium into one of America’s premier volleyball arenas while creating a culture that helps his athletes become winners time after time.
As Supervisor of Operations for the Boilermakers, Gurnell oversees recruiting, travel and camp operations. A 2004 graduate of Purdue University, she has been with Shondell since 2006.
Achievements and Honors
John Shondell is a Muncie native and graduate of Ball State University, having coached volleyball for decades. Additionally, he is the proud papa to two daughters named Allie and Lexi.
John and his wife Laura reside in Lafayette. He is a former Delta High School coach.
In addition to his coaching duties, he serves as an assistant coach for his brother Dave Shondell at Purdue University.
When not at work, he enjoys spending time with his wife and children. Additionally, he volunteers as a coach at ASICS Munciana Volleyball Club in West Lafayette as an adult volleyball club.
The Shondell family continues the legacy of volleyball greatness. His father Dave, the head women’s volleyball coach at Purdue; uncle John an assistant coach; and sister Kim who coached at Southwestern High School – all carry on this legacy.
John Shondell has grown up around volleyball, having three children who all played and coached the sport at some point. Now a setter at Ball State, he resides in Lafayette with his wife Laura, daughters Allie and Lexi and their families.
Through his career, he has inspired numerous young athletes to pursue sport they once thought only for picnics. He holds that passion is the key to success and believes that passion will always remain his most motivating attribute.
He founded the Munciana Volleyball Club in Muncie and coached at Muncie Burris High School for 34 years, leading his teams to 21 state titles. Additionally, he mentored youth volleyball players throughout the area.
John Shondell is a renowned women’s volleyball coach. During his 17-year tenure at Purdue University, he led his teams to fourteen NCAA Tournament appearances, eight Sweet Sixteens and two Elite Eights. Overall his teams have won 370 matches and earned 14 Division I/II conference championships.
The Shondell family is renowned as one of Indiana’s premier volleyball clubs. Their success continues to this day, with thousands of volleyball players, coaches and parents being part of their legacy. Dave Shondell and his brother John currently coach the Purdue Women’s Volleyball Team; Dave and John possess an uncanny understanding of each other’s strengths and weaknesses which has allowed them to create an effective coaching tandem. Furthermore, this close-knit family squeezes plenty of volleyball into their lives together.