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Michael Parker

UNC Greensboro men's soccer coach Michael Parker, at the time of his retirement in 2011, was the winningest coach in Division I men's soccer. 

Michael Parker

North Carolina Soccer Hall of Fame

Class of 2023

Michael Parker

UNC Greensboro men's soccer coach Michael Parker, at the time of his retirement in 2011, was the winningest coach in Division I men's soccer. Parker has led teams to six national titles, including three at UNCG. Parker's six national titles -- five in Division Ill and one in Division II -- rank him tied for first among active men's collegiate coaches. He is second all-time to the late Bob Guelker, who won seven championships in 29 years. In 1993, Parker became the first men's soccer coach in NCAA history to lead a team to the NCAA Tournament in all three divisions.


In 34 seasons as a head coach, Parker compiled a mark of 494-191-33, appearing in the NCAA Tournament 21 times. During 26 seasons as the coach at UNCG, Parker was 382-164-26. He led the Spartans to the NCAA Tournament 15 times in his 26 seasons, including eight in the program's Division I era. Most recently, Parker led the Spartans to the NCAA Tournament's round of 16 in 2004, 2005, 2006, and 2008. In 2004, the program spent four consecutive weeks as the consensus No. 1-ranked team in the nation. The program was unbeaten in its first 17 matches that season on its way to a 19-3-1 mark.


Parker's teams finished with winning records in 32 of his 34 seasons - with one of those exceptions being a campaign that still resulted in an NCAA Tournament Round of 16 appearance. He left coaching ranked No. 10 all-time among all men's soccer coaches in wins (494) and sixth among active coaches in all divisions. He has had the most wins of any active coach in Division I and is in the Top 10 in winning percentage at .711. That winning percentage also puts him in the Top 25 all-time in Division I history.


Parker's first squad in 1984 went 17-2-2, earning a No. 1 national ranking in the Division Ill polls and a spot in the NCAA Tournament's quarterfinal round. The following year, Parker led the Spartans to their first of three consecutive Division Ill national championships with a 5-0 pounding of Washington University (Mo.) in the finals to cap off a 20-5-0 campaign. That season, Parker was named the NSCAA's Division Ill National Coach of the Year.


When he led the Spartans to national titles in 1986 and 1987, he became the first coach to win three consecutive NCAA men's soccer national championships on any level. In their gradual climb to Division I status, the Spartans were the NCAA Division 11 national runners-up in 1989, and Parker was named Division II National Coach of the Year by the NSCAA.


For all his accolades at UNCG, Parker was inducted into the UNCG Athletics Hall of Fame in September 2005, making him the first male coach to be inducted while still active. Additionally, in honor of his success at UNCG and contribution to the sport, he was inducted into the Guilford County Hall of Fame in September 2007.


During Parker's tenure, UNCG won 10 conference titles, including six during its Division I era. Parker led UNCG to SoCon titles in 1997, 1998, 2004, 2005 and 2006. In fact, UNCG has the best winning percentage in Southern Conference action amongst member schools, going 70-29-6 since joining the league in 1997.


In addition to his success at the collegiate level, Parker has also achieved at the professional level as coach of the USISL Greensboro Dynamo. He coached the Dynamo from 1993-95 and won back-to-back USISL national championships. In all, he won a total of eight national championships at the college and professional levels.


Parker has also coached four Academic All-Americans - Eyjolfsson, Mark Fulk, Cliff Patterson, and Darren McDonough.


A native of Bradford, England, Parker was a graduate assistant coach at North Carolina in 1971 before moving to Lock Haven as an assistant in 1972. After four years as an assistant, Parker became the head coach at Lock Haven in 1976.

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