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Penn State men’s soccer coach Bob Warming retires after 40 years

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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. (Via Penn State) — Penn State men’s soccer coach Bob Warming today announced his retirement after a distinguished career spanning 40 years, numerous championships and impact on hundreds of student-athletes. His career record stands at 461-290-82, including a remarkable 28 conference championships.

The head coach of the Nittany Lions the past eight seasons, Warming will continue to lead the program to help with the transition to a new coach. A national search for Penn State’s 12th head coach will begin immediately.

Warming concludes his collegiate coaching career with 461 victories, ranking No. 8 in the history of NCAA Division I men’s soccer coaches. A two-time National Coach of the Year and two-time Big Ten Coach of the Year, Warming also was among only three active coaches, and five all-time, to lead two different programs to the NCAA College Cup.

“Thanks to everyone who has been a part of this collegiate coaching journey,” Warming stated. “I have been so fortunate. Fortunate to have met, worked with, worked for, and been a coach to, so many amazing people. People that I love, respect and admire. People that I have learned much from about the continual challenge of coaching, teaching and leading.

“Time has flown by, but relationships have lasted, and it’s been wonderful to observe so many former players become great men in their professions and wonderful husbands to their families. Some have gone on to become collegiate head coaches and two of them have their teams in the NCAA Division I Tournament this week.

“Bob Warming has made such a significant impact on the lives of student-athletes at Penn State and the other institutions where he has coached,” said Director of Athletics Sandy Barbour. “Bob has been a great ambassador for Penn State, leading our men’s soccer program with high character, integrity, a positive attitude and a smile on a daily basis throughout his outstanding career. On behalf of Penn State, we are sad that Bob is retiring from coaching, but thankful for his impact on our community and happy for what awaits in the next chapter of his life. We wish he and Cindy nothing but health and happiness as they focus on their family.”

Warming’s four decades as a head coach have been marked by distinction, achievement and success. The six-time finalist for National Coach of the Year and 2008 winner of the award (according to FieldTurf Tarkett) holds a lofty place in the NCAA record book, ranking third among active Division I head coaches and eighth in Division I history with 461 victories. Warming guided his teams to 32 winning seasons in his 40 years as a head coach.

Warming led Penn State to back-to-back Big Ten Championships in 2012 and 2013, earning Big Ten Coach of the Year accolades both years. He directed the Nittany Lions to the NCAA Championship Sweet 16 in 2010 and 2013 and another NCAA Tournament appearance in 2014.

In his first season in Happy Valley in 2010, Warming directed the Nittany Lions to 14 wins, their most since 2002 and the first NCAA tournament victory in five years. Following a Big Ten co-championship season in 2012, the Nittany Lions were the outright Big Ten Champions in 2013, advancing to the NCAA quarterfinals and winning 13 contests. Warming’s 2014 squad also won 13 matches, advancing to the NCAA tournament second round, and were 100 seconds away from winning a third consecutive Big Ten title in their final conference match.

“I chose to devote a lot of my life to being around other people’s children as their coach,” Warming said. “The successful rearing of our four amazing children fell mostly to my wife, Cindy, and I am eternally grateful to her. I am choosing to, and looking forward to, seeing and being there for my children and our grandchildren now whenever they need me.

“l appreciate the opportunity to assist with the transition to a new head coach. This is a fantastic coaching job and opportunity for someone. The new coach will be in for a remarkable experience with the Penn State community. ”

Warming came to Happy Valley from Creighton, where he took over a previously dormant program and developed it into a conference and regional power and national title contender.

In 14 overall years in Omaha, Warming served two different stints (1990-94, 2001-09), Warming, the winningest coach in program history, led the Bluejays to 190 victories, seven Missouri Valley Conference regular season and tournament championships, 11 NCAA Championship appearances and the 2002 NCAA College Cup. In recognition of his dominance in league play, Warming, a three-time Missouri Valley Conference Coach of the Year honoree, was named the MVC All-Centennial Team Coach in 2006. He was inducted into the Omaha Sports Hall of Fame in 2008 and the Creighton Athletics Hall of Fame in 2011.

In between his tenures at Creighton, Warming was the head coach at Saint Louis University, where he guided SLU to four Conference USA championships, four NCAA Championship berths, and the 1997 College Cup. His Billiken teams also finished ranked in the top 20 in all four seasons.

Warming also previously held head coaching positions at Old Dominion (1996), Charlotte (1982-88), Berry College (1977-81), and Transylvania University (1976).

Warming was instrumental in helping build three of the nation’s top collegiate soccer facilities at Creighton, St. Louis and Furman University.

During his distinguished career, Warming saw more than 60 of his players play professionally. He was the only coach to have at least one player drafted by Major League Soccer SuperDraft or supplemental draft in all but one year since the league’s inception in 1996.

A 1975 graduate of Berea College (Ky.), Warming was a four-sport varsity letterwinner, starring on the golf, swimming, tennis and soccer teams. As a starting goalkeeper, he posted a 28-2-2 record. Warming also holds a master’s of science degree in sport administration from Eastern Kentucky University.