Dec. 9, 2014
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – University of Notre Dame men’s soccer associate head coach BJ Craig has been named the Glenn “Mooch” Myernick National Men’s Assistant Coach of the Year.
The National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) on Tuesday announced the 24 individuals named Regional Assistant Coaches of the Year, as well as the four assistants named NSCAA/Field Turf Assistant Coaches of the Year for senior college, junior college and high school.
Craig, who was promoted to associate head coach in February of 2013, just completed his seventh season on the Notre Dame staff. Notre Dame posted a 12-5-4 record during the 2014 campaign and won the Atlantic Coast Conference Coastal Division with a 6-1-1 league mark. The Fighting Irish earned the top overall seed for the NCAA Championship before advancing to the Round of 16.
“This is a nice complement to Notre Dame and our program,” Craig says. “It really should be called the `Coaching Staff of the Year’ award. I get to work with the best coaches in Bobby Clark, Greg Dalby and Vern Gingerich. We also have an unbelievable support staff and administration that is second to none. But the real reward for all of us is working with the student-athletes each day. This is another feather in their cap for all their hard work and it is also a good reminder that we need to keep moving forward and try to be better.”
The Notre Dame program has enjoyed a tremendous amount of success with Craig on the sidelines. Since his arrival in South Bend, the Irish have posted an 88-36-25 record, won the 2013 national championship and captured four conference titles. The Fighting Irish have earned a bid to the NCAA Championship in six of Craig’s seven seasons and they have garnered one of the tournament’s 16 national seeds on five occasions, including the top overall seed in 2012 and 2014.
Last year, Craig was named the NSCAA South Region Assistant Coach of the Year.
In his seven seasons, Notre Dame has produced five All-Americans (2014 honorees have not been announced), 33 all-conference selections, four conference players of the year and 18 MLS draft picks. The program also has excelled in the classroom, boasting seven Academic All-America honorees and 10 NSCAA Scholar All-America selections, including two NSCAA Scholar-Athletes of the Year.
“BJ could have won this award in any number of years,” Notre Dame head coach Bobby Clark says. “He can do all facets: he’s a good coach, he knows everything that has to be done, he’s a good recruiter and he’s very thorough. He has a very nice and humble personality. He’s never somebody who talks a lot, but if you listen to what he says it always makes sense. It’s a fantastic award for him and I’m absolutely thrilled for him.”