Grambling State fires volleyball coach Chelsey Lucas amid internal investigation

The Grambling State athletics department  announced Tuesday the termination of volleyball coach Chelsey Lucas.

The announcement was made by GSU President Rick Gallot and Trayvean Scott, vice president for intercollegiate athletics.

The decision was made due to the determination of an internal investigation within the volleyball program based on reports of Lucas, a Houma native, abruptly cutting every member of the team and revoking their scholarships.

"The success of student-athletes and their ability to matriculate at Grambling State University is the top priority," Scott said. "As we move forward in this transition and commence a national search for the next coach, all volleyball student-athletes who received scholarships for the 2022-23 academic year will keep their scholarships and remain on the team. Walk-ons will also continue to hold their roster spot."

Any additional comments will be held until the conclusion of the investigation.

MAD PLAYERS: GSU volleyball players upset with loss of scholarships

Chelsey Lucas hired as Grambling State head volleyball coach
Chelsey Lucas hired as Grambling State head volleyball coach

“It is the responsibility of this institution to make sure that student-athletes are afforded opportunities in a manner compliant with all regulatory organizations," Gallot said. "That applies to athletics as much as it does to academics."

A national search for a new volleyball coach will begin this week.

Lucas, the 2006 SWAC defensive player of the year at Grambling, spent three seasons at Arkansas-Pine Bluff before being hired at Grambling on Feb. 14 to replace Demetria Keys-Johnson.

In April, members of the Grambling volleyball team who had their scholarships cut outlined Lucas' often cold interactions with the team in an interview with the News-Star.

The team only had three practice sessions together, most of which consisted of very few volleyball related drills and a lot of punishment-related running, according to multiple players.

Most players and parents who spoke to the News-Star felt Lucas and the athletics department's decision to cut the roster was premeditated.

During one instance, senior setter Sheila Borders was called in for an 11 a.m. meeting. Lucas made her shut off her phone, put it in a bucket and went on to inform her that, because she "didn't like the dynamic of the team," Borders would not be having her scholarship renewed.

A petition to reinstate scholarships to Grambling's players has garnered more than 3,750 signatures.

This article originally appeared on Monroe News-Star: Grambling fires volleyball coach amid 'internal investigation'