STEPHENVILLE – As Tarleton prepares to jump into NCAA Division I, head volleyball coach Mary Schindler has added one of the biggest names in D1 volleyball to her coaching staff effective immediately with the addition of former Texas star Haley Eckerman.
“I’m so excited to have someone like Haley on our staff,” said Schindler. “She has not only played at the highest level and won, but she has the personality to drive to be successful anywhere she goes.
“She will be a huge asset in recruiting because most of these athletes have grown up with pictures of her on their walls,” continued Schindler. “I have really enjoyed getting to know her and I believe she is going to make an immediate impact for our team on and off the court.”
Eckerman, a graduate of the University of Texas, comes to Tarleton after one of the most illustrious volleyball playing careers in Longhorn history and two years of coaching experience. She spent last season as the assistant coach for Lamar University in Beaumont.
“I’m very excited to work alongside Mary (Schindler) and be a part of the Texan volleyball program,” said Eckerman. “Tarleton has grown into one of the elite programs in the nation and I’m ready to help train and prepare our student-athletes to continue that success at the next level.”
A native of Waterloo, Iowa, Eckerman made her way to Austin in 2011 and went on to rewrite the Longhorn record books. She led UT to four NCAA Tournament tournaments, including four straight Sweet 16 showings. Eckerman’s Horns won the 2012 Division I National Championship and then reached back-to-back Final Fours over the next two seasons.
In 2011, she burst onto the national scene by being named the Big XII and AVCA Freshman of the Year, as well as AVCA All-America Second Team. She followed up in each of her next three seasons by being named the Big XII Player of the Year (2012-14) and AVCA First Team All-American (2012-14) three times.
Eckerman finished her career among the top 10 in six different statistical categories at the University of Texas, including fifth all-time in total points (1,910) and total kills (1,662). She also racked up 4.42 points per set and is No. 7 all-time in aces, No. 8 all-time in kills per set and No. 9 all-time in service aces per set.
Following her dominating career at UT, Eckerman earned a bachelor’s degree in applied learning and development and went on to compete at the professional level for the next four seasons. Her professional career covered stops in South Korea, Puerto Rico, Azerbaijan, Italy and Russia. In 2018, Eckerman co-founded Team Dream – the first All-African American team to compete and win USA Open Nationals.
In 2018, Eckerman traded in her jersey for coaching attire as she transitioned into the coaching profession. She was named the head coach in her hometown at Waterloo West High School and led the team to their first regional final in over 20 years. She made the move to college volleyball last season as the assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at Lamar in 2019.
Eckerman joins Schindler’s coaching staff for the 2020 volleyball season and will lead the Texans into NCAA Division I competition this fall as a member of the Western Athletic Conference.