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Pitt signs men’s soccer coach Jay Vidovich to contract extension

Photo courtesy Pitt Athletics

From University of Pittsburgh Athletic Department report 

Pitt men’s soccer head coach Jay Vidovich has signed a new contract that keeps the 2020 ACC Coach of the Year with the Panthers through at least the 2025 season, Director of Athletics Heather Lyke announced Wednesday morning.

“Under the leadership of Jay Vidovich, our men’s soccer program has undergone an extraordinary transformation,” said Lyke. “The team’s run to this year’s College Cup was truly remarkable, especially considering where the program was upon his arrival just five years prior. The University of Pittsburgh is thrilled to have Coach Vidovich leading our program well into the coming decade. Given his incredible track record, we know more historic successes are on the way.”

Vidovich and staff led Pitt to its best season in its 67 year history in 2020-21, earning countless awards and setting a new standard of high level achievement in the city of Pittsburgh. The Panthers finished the year 16-4 overall and 9-1 in ACC play, were named No. 1 in the nation by United Soccer Coaches on two separate occasions, won the ACC Coastal Division Championship and stamped its name in the NCAA Tournament as the No. 2 overall seed, eventually making it to the College Cup – men’s soccer’s Final Four.

Pitt produced many high level achievements on the pitch last season, including the first All-Americans in program history in Valentin Noel (First) and Jasper Löeffelsend (Second). The Panthers earned a total of 14 ACC postseason awards, including ACC Offensive Player of the Year (Noel), Defensive Player of the Year (Löeffelsend) and Freshman of the Year (Bertin Jacquesson), all while under the tutelage of Vidovich, who was named the conference’s Coach of the Year.

Vidovich accompanied Noel at the MAC Hermann Trophy presentation in St. Louis, Mo., this spring, an award presented to the top male and female collegiate soccer player in the nation. Noel was named a finalist for the award, the first finalist in Pitt program history.

Since his arrival at Pitt in 2016, Vidovich has brought the Panthers to the forefront of college soccer. He oversaw the first ACC victory in program history in 2017 over No. 21 Syracuse, the first ranked victory over an opponent since 2008. He led Pitt to its first ACC Tournament victory in 2018 and set new heights for the program in 2019 with an at-large berth to the NCAA Tournament, the first for the school since 1965.

“My family and I are excited that Heather Lyke has provided us with the opportunity to continue our project with the Pitt Men’s Soccer Program,” said Vidovich.

“It’s an honor to lead Pitt Men’s Soccer and to represent our jersey. I appreciate the leadership and support within the university and our athletic department. I’m excited to continue our work alongside such a talented staff and of course leading a group of hard working, committed student – soccer players as we strive to win on and off the field.”

“Our challenge now is to continue to push to improve and evolve as a program as we pursue future success for the university. I look forward to the next chapter in Pitt Soccer history.”

In his five years at the helm in Pittsburgh, Vidovich has coached two All-Americans, eight All-Region players, 23 All-ACC honorees, five All-ACC tournament players and has made the NCAA Tournament twice. The Panthers have also had three players drafted to the MLS. Vidovich holds an all-time record of 316-165-56 and is 44-44-6 at Pitt, including 26-12-2 in the last two seasons.

John Krysinsky has covered soccer and other sports for many years for various publications and media outlets. He is also author of 'Miracle on the Mon' -- a book about the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, which chronicles the club, particularly the early years of Highmark Stadium with the narrative leading up to and centered around a remarkable match that helped provide a spark for the franchise. John has covered sports for Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports, Pittsburgh Sports Report, has served as color commentator on Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC broadcasts, and worked with OPTA Stats and broadcast teams for US Open Cup and International Champions Cup matches held in the US. Krysinsky also served as the Head Men’s Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Point Park University, where he led the Pioneers to the first-ever winning seasons and playoff berths (1996-98); head coach of North Catholic boys (2007-08), associate head coach of Shady Side Academy boys (2009-2014).

Riverhounds MF Danny Griffin

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