COLCHESTER, Vt. - After spending the last four years coaching at the University of Vermont, including the past three as associate head coach, former Saint Michael's College men's soccer head coach Wade Jean has been hired to once again guide the Purple Knight program, Director of Athletics Geri Knortz announced on Monday. The Saint Albans, Vt., native led the program to 21 wins and two play-off appearances during his prior stint, for the 2006 and 2007 seasons.
"We are thrilled to welcome Wade back to our staff," said Knortz. "His two years with us was a transformational experience for our men's soccer program. Not only did he lead the team to two of the most successful seasons in program history and back-to-back postseason appearances, but his leadership inspired his student-athletes to perform at their peak, in the classroom as well as on the field."
During the past four falls, Jean coached with the Division I Catamounts, helping the program qualify for the America East Conference Tournament three times while going 11-11-7 in the conference. Vermont knocked off a pair of nationally-ranked foes in that stretch, including No. 13 Stanford University on Sept. 1, 2010.
Jean, who holds a National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) Advanced National Coaching License, is 130-82-32 in 13 seasons as a college head coach. He has also served as the director of coaching for the Nordic Soccer Club in Essex, Vt., since 2006.
In his initial stint with the Purple Knights, Jean inherited a program that had qualified for the Northeast-10 Conference Tournament five times in its first 19 seasons of league play. He promptly led the program to NE-10 Tournament berths both years at the helm, posting a 21-10-8 overall record and a 12-8-6 league mark. The 2006 squad's third-place regular-season showing was its best since 1988, and its NE-10 Tournament semifinal appearance was the program's first in 18 years. The year before Jean's arrival, the Purple Knights allowed 37 goals in 18 games; during his two seasons, the Purple and Gold yielded 28 in 39 contests, posting 20 shutouts.
Prior to Saint Michael's, Jean was the head coach from 1998 to 2005 at Division I Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, being named Atlantic 10 Conference Coach of the Year four times in his eight seasons. He left with the school record for victories, going 82-54-15. The Dukes posted five 13-win seasons, including each year between 2002 and 2005, advancing at least as far as the A-10 Tournament semifinals each of those four years, including to the 2002 title game. Under Jean, the Dukes made it to a pair of tournament championship games and earned at least a share of three A-10 regular-season crowns. Duquesne was ranked as high as 25th in the final 2003 national poll.
Jean was an assistant coach for three seasons from 1995 to 1997 at Division I Bowling Green (Ohio) State University, helping the Falcons to a 52-13-3 record and three NCAA Tournament appearances. Bowling Green won the Mid-American Conference (MAC) Tournament all three years. Before his stint at Bowling Green, Jean worked at Division I Illinois State University, serving as a volunteer assistant in 1993 and a graduate assistant in 1994. The Redbirds tied for second place in the Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) both seasons.
Prior to heading Midwest, Jean spent three seasons (1990-92) as the head coach at Champlain College in Burlington, building the Beavers into one of the region's top Division I National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) programs. Champlain won a program-record 12 games in Jean's final year with the school in 1992. Following a playing career at Johnson State College, Jean spent one season as an assistant coach at his alma mater, helping the Badgers compile a 16-4-1 record and a berth in the NAIA Tournament in 1989. The Badgers also won Mayflower Conference and North Atlantic regional championships during Jean's year as an assistant.
A high school graduate of Bellows Free Academy in Saint Albans, Jean played soccer for four years at Johnson State, graduating in 1990 with a degree in elementary education. A four-year starter as a defensive midfielder, Jean was a senior captain and led the Badgers to three Mayflower Conference titles. He also earned the Bryan Wendall Award, given to the individual signifying the most dedication to his college's men's soccer program. Jean received his master's degree in health, physical education, recreation and dance from Illinois State in 1996.