Date Posted:08/11/2005, 10:00AM
BRUNSWICK, Maine - Bowdoin College has announced the hiring of Fran O'Leary as the next head coach of the men's soccer program. A veteran of collegiate soccer, O'Leary was most recently the head coach at Division I George Mason University. O'Leary replaces Brian Ainscough, who accepted a position at Northeastern earlier this month.
The Polar Bears are consistently ranked among the top 25 soccer programs in the nation by the NSCAA (National Soccer Coaches Association of America) and have reached double-digits in wins in each of the past five seasons. Bowdoin will open their 2005 season September 10 at Bates.
"We're thrilled to have someone of Fran's experience and talent joining our staff," said Bowdoin Athletic Director Jeff Ward. "I'm confident that he'll continue the tradition of excellence that our soccer program has established through the years."
O'Leary is no stranger to Division III soccer, having started his career at Elmira (N.Y.) College, where he posted a stellar 38-11-2 mark from 1989-1991. In 1992, he became the head man at Kenyon (Ohio) College, where he posted a 32-4-4 record and led the squad to a berth in the 1993 NCAA Semifinals. After being named the Great Lakes Regional Coach of the Year, he earned his first Division I head job at Dartmouth.
O'Leary guided the Big Green to a 56-48-14 record and two NCAA College Cup appearances in his seven seasons, including a 12-6 record and Ivy League runner-up finish in 2000. Dartmouth was 10-4-4 and reached the second round of the NCAA Tournament in 1997 as O'Leary was named Division I Coach of the Year by the New England Intercollegiate Soccer League.
The Dublin, Ireland native continued to build his reputation at George Mason as the Patriots became contenders in the Colonial Athletic Association during his tenure. His four-year stint was highlighted by an 11-6-6 campaign in 2003, as the team reached double figures in victories for the first time since 1998 and reached the CAA Tournament Championship game.
A gradute of Thomas Edison State College, O'Leary began his coaching career as an assistant coach at Boston College and New Hampshire and holds a NSCAA Advanced National Diploma. O'Leary and his wife Julie were married in 2002 and have a daughter, Grace Elizabeth.
Photo Courtesy of George Mason University