THE THOMPSON FILE:
• Enters the 2012 campaign as the program’s all-time wins leader (131)
• Over the past 10 seasons (2002-2011) Thompson’s Wildcats have an overall record of 88-72-40
• The Wildcats have qualified for the America East post-season eight out of last 10 years (2001, ‘02, ‘04, ‘06, ‘07, ’08, ’09, ‘10)
• Led the Wildcats all the way to the America East Championship game for the first time since 1994, becoming the first team ever to record three shutouts in the conference tournament in 2010
• Thompson’s squads have received the National Soccer Coaches Association of America Team Academic Award in each of the last four years
• Under Thompson’s tutelage the ‘Cats won the America East regular season title in 2009
• UNH’s 2009 conference record of 6-0-1 was the first undefeated regular season in America East history since 1997
• Advanced to America East Semifinals in 2006, 2007, and 2009, 2010
• Honored as America East Coach of the Year in 2006 and 2009
• Led the ‘Cats to a record of 12-5-3 in 2006, the program’s best mark since 1994
• Gained third (#22 in ‘97) and fourth (#23 in ‘05) national rankings in program history
• Achieved #1 New England region ranking in 2005 for second time in program’s 48-year history
• Appeared in the regional rankings in 10 of 14 years, including highs of #1 (2005), #2 (2003) and #3 (2002).
• Ranked in the top ten within the region in eight of the last nine years (2002-10)
• Coached 43 All-Conference, 29 All-New England, and six America East Conference Player of the Year honorees
• Mentored 175 America East Academic Honorees, six Academic All-Region, and three Academic All-Americans
• Received the NCAA Division I Public Recognition Award for APR in 2006, 2007, 2008, and 2009
• Received the NSCAA Academic Achievement Award in 2007, 2008, and 2009
• Thompson’s UNH teams have the lowest total team card accumulation for the past eight years among America East programs.
• UNH’s 2007 RPI of 48 was in the top 25 percent of the nation
• America East conference RPI rank was 7th out of 24 conferences in 2007
• America East conference RPI rank was 6th out of 24 conferences in 2008
Head Coach Rob Thompson enters his
20th season with the University of New Hampshire men’s soccer
program and his 18th as head coach. During his tenure as head
coach, Thompson has posted a 131-128-50 record and has led the team
to eight America East tournament berths in the last 10 seasons.
Last season, the Wildcats tallied a conference record of 1-4-2 and an overall mark of 7-9-2, including a pair of victories to claim the 22nd Annual Nike Fall Classic for the third consecutive year. However, for the first time since 2005, New Hampshire did not qualify to participate in the America East tournament, bringing their impressive streak of five-straight appearances to an end.
In 2010, Thompson led the Wildcats all the way to the America East Championship game for the first time since 1994, posting a 9-5-6 record on the season. Despite falling 5-4 on penalty kicks to UMBC (Nov. 13) in the title game, the Wildcats held the Retrievers scoreless through regulation and both overtime periods, marking the third consecutive team they shut out in the conference tournament, as they also blanked Binghamton (Nov. 6) and Boston University (Nov. 10). The impressive mark made UNH the first team ever to record three shutouts in the conference tournament.
UNH’s hot postseason run steamed from its impressive regular season, wrapping up the year with a 7-5-5 record and a 2-3-2 mark in conference play. Despite dropping their last two games of the season, the Wildcats were unbeaten in five of their six games prior, notching back-to-back wins against Boston University (Oct. 23) and Albany (Oct. 27). As a result of their stellar play, six Wildcats received America East All-Conference honors, including Goalkeeper of the Year and the Jim Urquhart Student-Athlete of the Year award.
Off the field Thompson’s student-athletes have had mirrored success, receiving the National Soccer Coaches Association of America Team Academic Award for the fourth consecutive year. UNH was one of just three America East men’s teams to be recognized, finishing with the highest grade point average among all the squads with a mark of 3.17.
Individually, three Wildcats received National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) scholar honors and Colin O’Donnell was tabbed an NSCAA Men’s College Scholar All-American, becoming the first Wildcat to received All-American status since 2005. O’Donnell also took home the America East scholar-athlete award for the second consecutive season, demonstrating continued excellence both on the field and in the classroom. Joe Corsello was just as successful, posting the best grade point average among all UNH student-athletes for the 2010-11 academic year.
In 2009 Thompson guided the Wildcats to one of their best seasons to date, posting a 9-7-2 record and clinched the No. 1 seed in the America East tournament. Additionally, the ‘Cats earned their first regular-season title since 1994 and their first outright title ever.
The Wildcats wrapped up their America East regular season with a 2-1 win over Binghamton University on Oct. 28. The win extended UNH’s regular-season unbeaten streak to seven games (6-0-1), as they finished the conference schedule undefeated. Moreover, it was the first time since 1997 that a team completed the conference schedule without a loss and is UNH’s best conference record since also compiling a 6-0-1 mark in 1994.
Thompson and his staff took home Coaching Staff of the Year honors, while seven Wildcats received postseason accolades, including Defender of the Year and Goalkeeper of the Year. Three ‘Cats were named to the All-Conference First Team and the All-Rookie Team, while one was selected to the All-Conference Second Team.
The Wildcats got off to a fast start in 2008 as they posted a 5-0-2 record to open up the season, with wins over Memphis and Massachusetts. The Wildcats kept pace the rest of the season finishing 7-7-4, including a 2-4-2 mark in the America East play. UNH clinched the final playoff spot in the America East tournament as they defeated UMBC in dramatic fashion, 3-2, Oct. 29.
In 2007 the Wildcats made a late push for a postseason berth as they pieced together a 4-1-7 record down the stretch to clinch a spot in the America East tournament. New Hampshire would make the most of the opportunity as they defeated Boston University, 4-2, on penalty kicks after finishing regulation with a 0-0 tie to advance to the semifinal round of the tournament.
In 2006 Thompson led the Wildcats to a record of 12-5-3, its best mark since 1994. The squad advanced to the semifinals of the conference tournament, with Thompson and his staff earning Coaching Staff of the Year honors by America East.
However, Thompson’s impact goes beyond results on the field as his Wildcats have received the National Soccer Coaches Association of America Team Academic Award for four consecutive years, for having a team grade point average over a 3.0.
Prior to becoming head coach in 1995, Thompson was an assistant with the program for two seasons and the Wildcats made their only NCAA appearance in 1994 after compiling a 15-5-2 record. In his first season as head coach, Thompson led the Wildcats to 10 victories. Thompson’s 1997 team captured a No. 22 national ranking. He became UNH’s all-time wins leader in 2001, reaching the 50-win mark. His 2003 squad was ranked as high as No. 2 in the region, and the 2002 Wildcats spent the entire regular season ranked in New England.
Prior to arriving at UNH, Thompson coached extensively in the Washington, D.C., area, and directed club teams to both state and regional titles. A Virginia native, Thompson spent three years coaching and teaching at South Lakes High School in Reston, Va., and three years coaching in the Virginia Olympic Development Program.
Thompson is heavily involved in the organization and development of youth soccer in the Seacoast region, as well as throughout the state of New Hampshire. In addition to directing the highly successful Soccer Dimensions youth camps, Thompson served as the NSCAA State Director and is a Region I Olympic Development Program staff member. He holds a USSF “A” license as well as the NSCAA Premier Diploma. Over the past 11 years Thompson has coached Seacoast United teams to eight USYSA state titles and two New England Super Y championship berths.
Thompson, who coaches in the U.S. Soccer Developmental Academy, was named the U-18 Northeast Conference Coach of the Year for 2007-08. He has coached the Seacoast United U-18 boys in the USSF Development Academy since 2007. His 2001 U-16 boys team finished fourth at the Super Y League national championship. In 2007, Thompson led his SUSC U-17 boys team to the USYSA Region I final.
Thompson graduated from the University of Maine in 1989 with a B.A. degree in Zoology. While working towards a post-graduate degree in physical education, Thompson captained Montgomery (Md.) College to a national junior college ranking and earned All-State and All-Region honors.
Thompson is currently pursuing a master’s degree in kinesiology at UNH. He is married to Lea (Craft), a member of two national championship soccer teams at Barry University in Florida. They reside in Durham, N.H., with their daughters Chloe, Jordan, and Brooke.