Nicole Hervey art for Q&A

Ryan volleyball coach Nicole Hervey watches her team from the sideline. Hervey is looking forward to working with her team again after the shutdown in high school athletics due to the spread of COVID-19 is over.

Ryan head volleyball coach Nicole Hervey was gracious enough to sit down with the Denton Record-Chronicle‘s sports department for a series called “10 Questions With Coach.” Here are Hervey’s thoughts on several thought-provoking questions.

All this talk about football practices. How are things going in your volleyball world?

Hervey: It’s going good. We just miss the girls. You think of teaching and coaching — I’ve been doing both for a long time, and you think you get burned out by it. But you do miss it, especially during times like these. I’m ready to go back. You miss that interaction of being around the kids. And they do, too.

It wasn’t that long ago that you were taking the reins at Ryan. Are you happy with what you, your staff and the players have accomplished so far?

Yes. I think it’s a building process. When I came in, I had a really good group, and from there it’s been a lot of building. The next two groups of freshmen — I’ve been around them since the beginning of middle school working with them. I’m anxious to get them into the program and build. We don’t have a lot of club kids, so we’re just trying to get them all plugged in and learning the game. I don’t like losing, and that’s been the adjustment for me. But I’m working hard to turn that around.

If you could coach any sport besides volleyball, what would it be and why?

It would be a toss up between track and gymnastics. Those are probably the two I was most active in and know the most about. With track, I like working with the male and female athletes and getting to know each of them. It’s fun coaching those types of athletes. I was a hurdler, so I coached a lot of that. I was in gymnastics a lot and did that competitively, so I could do that, too.

What do you like to do for fun?

My free time is pretty much eating and going out to a movie. My parents just built a lake house and my aunt has a lake house, so we like to go to the lake and do a lot with family. I also feel like my fun is going to change now that my daughter graduated with her master’s and my son graduated from high school. So I feel like I’m entering a different phase of my life. I’d like to save up some money here and there and do more traveling. You don’t get to do a lot of that, so that’s what I’d like to do more of.

If you had to fight a bear or a lion, which one would you pick and why?

I think I would fight the bear. I’m trying to remember what I’ve been told about fighting a bear — something about poking their eyes and you can get them to run off. I’ll have to text you back on that. But I also feel like lions are faster, so I could probably outrun a bear.

If you had to take a pie to the face, who would you want to throw it and what flavor would it be?

The flavor would be chocolate cream pie. I don’t like like pie much, so it’d have to be chocolate cream pie. And I’d probably let my assistant Chloe Tate do it. She’d be fun, and she’d help me clean up.

How long do you think you could survive in a zombie apocalypse?

I’m surviving; I’m telling you right now. I would survive as long as I needed to get out. I was raised on scary movies with my dad. I’m not going to be that dumb person. I’m going to do what I need to do to survive.

What trend or style did you rock in middle or high school that you now realize was silly looking?

Hervey: That’s easy. The pink and blue eyeshadow and the big bangs, for sure. That’s what I rocked. I also had a pair of MC Hammer pants. My stepmother made me a few of those — homemade MC Hammer pants. I wore those a lot.

Have you ever gotten out of a speeding ticket for batting your eyelashes at the cop?

I don’t know if I’ve gotten out of it for batting my lashes; if I did, I didn’t realize it was happening. I have gotten out of it two or three times for looking at them and saying, “I’m so sorry; I had no idea how fast I was going.” I did have to be really nice.

Scenario: You’re in a gym and standing in front of you is the best setter to ever grace the high school volleyball court. Next to her is your assistant coach Chloe Tate. You can only keep one. Which one?

I’d definitely keep Chloe Tate. That’s hands down. I wouldn’t trade her for anything. No. She’ll train those kids for anything I need them to do. And if I don’t find a setter, she’d have my back 100%. And then she’d feed me pies when I’m depressed over my setter not doing what I want her to do.

STEVE GAMEL can be reached at 469-360-3611 and via Twitter at


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