Brenda Winkeler
    Brenda Winkeler

    Bartelso, Ill.

    Head Coach

    Seventh year

    Alma Mater:
    Millikin (1984)


    Fifth-seeded Salukis travel to Cedar Falls for MVC Tournament

    SIU opens the tournament against No. 4 Missouri State at 5 p.m. on Thursday.


    Volleyball coach Brenda Winkeler reassigned within SIU Athletics

    Winkeler coached Salukis for seven seasons


    Volleyball ends season with three-set loss to No. 11 UNI

    Salukis celebrate seniors Amanda Arnold and Lauren Blumhorst on senior night


    Volleyball falls to Bradley in four

    Bad start in fourth set dooms Salukis


    Volleyball hosts Bradley and UNI to close season

    Salukis to hold senior night Saturday against Panthers


    Volleyball vs. Bradley

    Volleyball vs. Bradley

    Updated Aug. 8, 2011

    Brenda Winkeler begins her seventh year as the head volleyball coach at Southern Illinois, having led her team to the Missouri Valley Conference tournament in two of the past four seasons.

    Although the 2010 squad (14-14, 5-13 MVC) fell short of the conference tournament, Winkeler's 2009 team posted its best record (18-12) since Southern's storied 2002 season, advancing to MVC postseason play.

    Brenda Winkeler coached the Salukis to a program-best 11-0 start in 2009

    The Salukis went 4-1 against BCS schools in 2010, with wins against Alabama, UConn, Mississippi State and USF. All four victories were 3-0 shutouts, marking the first time that SIU shut out a BCS opponent since its rout of West Virginia at its own Saluki Invitational in 2006.

    The 2009 team's 11-0 start was the best in school history, and the team jumped from 117 to 107 on the NCAA Women's Volleyball RPI. The team also set school record for starting the season on a 12-game win streak, winning three tournaments to start the season.

    Since Winkeler took the reins of the Saluki volleyball program, the team has reached the record books in 44 categories, breaking 19 school records including the record for career block assists (Chandra Roberson, 381), digs in a season (Kristy Elswick, 569) and career digs (Elswick, 1,930). Elswick finished her career fourth all-time in MVC history in career digs.

    Winkeler has also produced three First-Team and four Second-Team All-Missouri Valley Conference selections, as well as three MVC All-Freshman honorees, 14 MVC Scholar-Athletes, two MVC All-Tournament Team members and six Academic All-District picks.

    In 2009, Jen Berwanger became the fourth Saluki in school history to be named a two-time First-Team All-MVC honoree. Berwanger finished her career at SIU in the top-five of several categories in the school record books, including career sets played (third, 450), career matches played (third, 126) career kills (fourth, 1,374), career attempts (second, 4,059) and careeer digs (second, 1,571).

    Winkeler's 2007 team finished with the best block production (78 solo, 480 assists, 2.86 blocks per set) since the program started keeping the stat in 1982, and was ranked nationally at several points during the season. Also in 2007, the Salukis produced the most service aces since 2002 (180) and the most digs since 1991 (1,909). Jen Berwanger also became the first Saluki to earn weekly MVC honors since 2002.

    The 2006 squad produced the best digs per set production in school history (18.11) and the lowest single-season total for ball handling errors (11).

    Under Winkeler's tutelage, SIU garnered the first First-Team All-MVC honoree since 2002 in Johannah Yutzy in 2005. Yutzy went on to take second-team honors in 2006. The SIU grad hit .365 in 2005, second all-time in school history. Just a two-year starter, Yutzy wrapped up her career a .298 hitter, third all-time at SIU.

    Winkeler's Salukis have earned the AVCA Team Academic Award six straight seasons

    As a team, the Salukis have improved in the league in four areas since 2004, including moving from ninth in the league in service aces (1.26/set) to first in 2006 (1.66/set). The team also went from having no athletes ranked in the top-five in individual statistics in 2004 to having 16 athletes ranked in 21 categories over the past five seasons.

    Academically, the team held a 3.35 cumulative grade point average in 2010-11, earning the American Volleyball Coaches Association Team Academic Award for the sixth-straight season. The Salukis were one of 92 NCAA Division I schools to earn the academic distinction.

    Prior to Winkeler's move to SIU, she led Eastern Illinois' volleyball program from 2000-2004.

    Winkeler recorded an 82-72 record in five years with the Panthers. She revitalized the Eastern Illinois program, making a trip to the NCAA Tournament in 2001 and capturing a share of the Ohio Valley Conference title in 2004.

    At Eastern, Winkeler coached 12 All-OVC honorees, including the 2004-05 OVC Female Athlete of the Year, Erica Gerth. Gerth was also the 2004 OVC Player of the Year for volleyball and a First-Team All-OVC selection. An all-region pick, Gerth was the first ever volleyball All-American (honorable mention) at Eastern, and was voted into the Eastern Illinois Hall of Fame for her efforts.

    Winkeler's setter at Eastern, Maren Crabtree, was the 2004 OVC Freshman of the Year as well as being named Second Team All-OVC, honorable mention all-region and regional Freshman of the Year. Collegiate Volleyball Update magazine named Crabtre the national Freshman of the Year

    In 2004, Winkeler's Panthers were ranked nationally in the top-20 in assists, kills and digs.

    Prior to coaching at Eastern Illinois, Winkeler won a junior college national championship in 1999 at Parkland College in Champaign, Ill. She compiled a 428-164-9 record in 11 years at Parkland and earned Coach of the Year honors by both the National Junior College Athletic Association and American Volleyball Coaches Association.

    Winkeler helped produced five junior college All-Americans at Parkland in addition to four Academic All-Americans. Fifteen of her players earned scholarships to NCAA Division I institutions.

    She was named the Region 24 Coach of the Year in 1991, and was a three-time CCCI Coach of the Year.

    Winkeler's 1999 national championship team was inducted into the Parkland College Hall of Fame in 2007, the same year Winkeler was inducted into the National Junior College Hall of Fame.

    From 1984-1989, she was the head coach at Shiloh High School, guiding the Raiders to the IHSA Class A Elite Eight in 1987. During her tenure there, Shiloh won four regional titles with a 131-19 record.

    A Bartelso, Ill., native, Winkeler graduated from Breese Mater Dei High School, received her undergraduate degree in physical education from Millikin University in 1984, and went on to the University of Illinois, where she earned her master's degree in educational administration in 1991. Winkeler was inducted into the Millikin Athletics Hall of Fame in 2002.

    Winkeler's Division I Record

    Year School Record Conference Postseason
    2010 Southern Illinois 14-14 5-13 (8th)
    2009 Southern Illinois 18-12 7-11 (6th) MVC Tourn. First Round
    2008 Southern Illinois 17-12 7-11 (T6th)
    2007 Southern Illinois 15-16 6-10 (T6th) MVC Tourn. First Round
    2006 Southern Illinois 11-17 6-12 (T6th)
    2005 Southern Illinois 10-18 6-12 (7th)
    2004 Eastern Illinois 25-6 15-1 (T1st) OVC Tourn. Runner Up
    2003 Eastern Illinois 9-23 6-10 (T7th)
    2002 Eastern Illinois 9-21 4-12 (8th)
    2001 Eastern Illinois 21-9 12-4 (T2nd) OVC Tourn. Champs/NCAA First Round
    2000 Eastern Illinois 18-13 11-5 (3rd)
    Total 167-161 85-101

    Winkeler's Junior College Record

    Year School Record Accolades
    1999 Parkland CC 54-9 NJCAA Champions
    1998 Parkland CC 40-22 CCCI Champions
    1997 Parkland CC 37-21 CCCI Champions
    1996 Parkland CC 34-15 CCCI Champions
    1995 Parkland CC 44-10
    1994 Parkland CC 34-12-2
    1993 Parkland CC 26-25
    1992 Parkland CC 49-12-1
    1991 Parkland CC 47-10-1 Ranked 7th Nationally
    1990 Parkland CC 39-8-1
    1989 Parkland CC 24-20-4
    Total 428-164-9