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Summer 2009 | Volume 32, Number 2 | Athletics

McCrath Honored by National Soccer Coaches

Hall of Fame


Cliff McCrath on the field.
Cliff McCrath is a member of the U.S. Soccer Hall of Fame.

On January 16, 2009, Cliff McCrath, coach of Seattle Pacific University’s Falcons from 1970 to 2007, was inducted into the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) Hall of Fame. In August, his name will shine alongside 45 others at the National Soccer Hall of Fame in Oneonta, New York.

It must have been an easy decision. McCrath was at the helm for the Falcons’ five NCAA Division II national titles — in 1978, 1983, 1985, 1986, and 1993. His teams played for the national title 10 times in 30 tournaments.

He enjoyed 37 consecutive winning seasons, achieving the best record in Division II history: 512-190-87. If you count his victories before he began coaching at SPU, his record is even more impressive — 597-233-95 — the second-best record across all divisions of college soccer.

It’s not his first NSCAA honor. In 1978, the organization named him NSCAA National Coach of the Year, and he was recognized as Conference Coach of the Year eight times. In 1985, they bestowed upon McCrath their highest honor: The Honor Award.

In February 2008, McCrath retired from SPU, and Mark Collings, assistant coach and a former Falcon player, stepped into his shoes. McCrath continues to direct the Northwest Soccer Camp that he founded in 1973, and serves as secretary-editor for the NCAA Soccer Rules Committee.

"Cliff McCrath is simply a legend in the sport, in Seattle, and around the world," says SPU President Philip Eaton. "I am extremely grateful that he has been such a strong advocate and ambassador in the world for soccer for SPU."

Perhaps the greatest measure of McCrath’s achievement is found in his players’ success. Eighteen times, his SPU players were NSCAA All-Americans. Professional teams drafted more than 40 of his players, and more than 100 became coaches in high schools and colleges.

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Department Highlights

A New Chapter for the Falcons
SPU hires Erin O’Connell as its first woman athletic director.

Seasons of Achievement
Falcons highlights were many this year, including individual national titles and a coach moving on.

McCrath Honored by National Soccer Coaches
Cliff McCrath inducted into the National Soccer Coaches Association of America Hall of Fame.