Soccer (coach): 1975-87
|Hall of Fame:|
Class of 2001
Jim Rudy built and coached the men's soccer team from 1975-87 and the women's team from 1981-87 after a standout playing career at Rollins College. He founded the women's soccer program and led it to four post-season appearances in seven years and a 73-22-6, overall record.
Rudy's teams advanced to the Final Four of the NCAA Tournament twice, including an appearance in the first NCAA championship game in 1982. His 1981 squad finished runner up in the AIAW, the forerunner to the NCAA. He finished his career as the winningest coach in history of UCF's men's soccer program with a 129-58-18 record and two NCAA Tournament appearances.
Rudy's list of accomplishments is impressive. In over 26 years of coaching in both the men's and women's game, Rudy has trained some of soccer's top names. He has coached 37 All-America selections, nine at UCF, as well as two Hermann Trophy recipients. UCF's Michelle Akers (1988) and UMass' April Kater (1990) were both recognized as the nation's best women's collegiate soccer player. Briana Scurry, who played at UMass from 1990-93, won the Missouri Athletic Club /adidas Goalkeeper of the Year award in 1993, while Akers captured the award in 1987.
Under Rudy, both Scurry and Akers have been pivotal forces in the United States National Team's performances worldwide, including winning a gold medal at the 1996 and 2004 Olympic Games, and the 1999 World Cup crown. Scurry captured a gold medal with Team USA at the 2004 Athens Olympics.
Rudy is a master tactician and is considered to be one of the nation's best goalkeeper coaches. Three of his former women's keepers have gone on to play with the U.S. National Team (Amy Allmann, Kim Wyant and Scurry). Rudy also coached former men's U.S. National Team keeper Winston DuBose at UCF. In addition, six men and three women keepers under Rudy's direction were drafted or have played professionally.
After many years building the UCF program, Rudy moved on to the University of Massachusetts women's soccer program where he has spent nearly two decades. In his career, Rudy has directed his teams into NCAA postseason play 13 times, including nine of his 18 seasons at the helm of the UMass program. Rudy holds the distinct honor of being the only coach in the women's collegiate ranks to guide two different schools to the Final Four. Rudy directed UCF to the national championship game in 1982 and to the national semifinals in 1987. He then guided Massachusetts to the national semifinals in 1993, falling to eventual champion North Carolina 4-1.
At UMass, Rudy has won the Atlantic 10 regular-season championship once and the tournament title four times since the birth of A-10 soccer in 1993. The three-time (1993, 1995, 1997) A-10 Coach of the Year has produced six conference Player of the Year selections, as well as four A-10 Tournament MVPs and over 50 All-Conference selections. He won his 200th game with the Minutewomen on Sept. 27, 2004, a 4-1 victory over Holy Cross.