UW Health Sports Medicine 

Trask selected to lead men's soccer program



Jan. 20, 2010

MADISON, Wis. -- John Trask, a fixture at the highest levels of national and international soccer for nearly two decades, has been tabbed to lead the University of Wisconsin men’s soccer program, UW Director of Athletics Barry Alvarez announced Wednesday.

 The Trask File
 Name: John Trask
 Age: 43
 Hometown: Milwaukee, Wis.
 Alma Mater: Indiana University, 1990, 1993
 Family: Wife, Jela; Son, Jack
 Coaching Experience
• Head Coach, UIC, 2005-2009
• Assistant Coach, FC Dallas (MLS), 2004
• Assistant Coach, D.C. United (MLS), 2002-03
• Assistant Coach, Miami Fusion (MLS), 2000-2001
• Assistant Coach, Indiana University, 1993-1999
• Graduate Assistant, Indiana University, 1991-1992
 • 2006 Horizon League
 • 2007 Horizon League Tournament
 • 2008 Horizon League
 Individual Awards
 • 2006 Horizon League Coach of the Year
 • 2008 Horizon League Coach of the Year
 The Trask File Get Acrobat Reader

“John’s coaching accomplishments and background make him a perfect fit for us,” Alvarez said. “He has had tremendous success as a coach on the collegiate level as well as the professional level. His familiarity with the Big Ten as both a player and assistant coach will be a great asset for our team. It’s a pleasure to be able to welcome him back to his native state and into the Badger family.”

Trask, who spent the past five seasons as head coach at the University of Illinois at Chicago, becomes the sixth head coach in the 34-year history of the Wisconsin program.

“First of all, I'd like to thank Coach Alvarez, Steve Waterfield and the rest of the senior staff at UW for giving me this great opportunity,” Trask said. “With the backing of my family, and after communication with some top people in the soccer community and important contacts in the state of Wisconsin, I felt this moment was the perfect time to accept the position.

"I'm very much looking forward to working with the current team and also reaching out to the recruits that have committed to UW in the coming days,” Trask added. “I'm excited not only to work with Keith Tiemeyer, who will stay on as our top assistant, but also with the UW women's staff to continue building Wisconsin soccer into an overall tremendous program.”

Widely regarded as one of the top coaches in the game, Trask brings 14 years of collegiate coaching experience – along with five seasons spent in Major League Soccer ranks – to Madison. Most recently, he developed the UIC program into a powerhouse that claimed three Horizon League championships and qualified for NCAA tournament play each season from 2006 to 2008.

Over that span, Trask’s teams posted a record of 38-13-17 (.648) -- including an amazing 8-2-1 mark in road games against ranked opponents. Also in those three seasons, Trask mentored four All-Americans and six players that earned All-Great Lakes Region honors from the National Soccer Coaches Association of America.

He earned Horizon League Coach of the Year honors after leading the Flames to a regular-season conference title and berth in the second round of the NCAA tournament in 2006, a season in which UIC went 13-3-5 and finished with a stellar 0.36 goals-against average that ranks as the fourth-best single-season mark in NCAA history.

Trask followed that with another NCAA berth in 2007, as the Flames won the Horizon League tournament title and advanced to the school’s first-ever Elite Eight by winning three-consecutive road games on the way to a No. 10 national ranking at season’s end.

The Flames won another regular-season Horizon League title and returned to the NCAA Sweet 16 in 2008, a season in which UIC put together a 12-match unbeaten streak and ascended to a No. 4 national ranking.

Under Trask’s tutelage, goalkeeper Jovan Bubonja, who finished his career as a three-time first-team All-Horizon League selection, earned first-team All-America honors and was a Hermann Trophy semifinalist that season. Midfielder Baggio Husidic also earned first-team All-America honors in 2008 and was selected by the Chicago Fire in the 2009 MLS SuperDraft.

That marked the third-consecutive season in which one of Trask’s players became an MLS draft pick, as Cesar Zambrano was selected by the Colorado Rapids in 2008 and Tonci Skroce was taken by the Columbus Crew in 2007.

Known for his defensive mentality, Trask’s UIC teams recorded 38 shutouts between 2006 and 2008.

His 2009 Flames team finished with a 6-6-7 record against a demanding schedule, marking the only season in which Trask’s squad failed to reach double-digit wins.

Prior to his return to the college game, Trask spent five seasons as an assistant coach with three Major League Soccer clubs. He spent two seasons with the now-defunct Miami Fusion, which advanced to the final of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup in his first season before playing its way into the semifinals of the MLS Playoffs in 2001.

Trask then spent two seasons with D.C. United before coaching with FC Dallas in 2004.

No stranger to the Big Ten Conference, Trask’s time in professional soccer came after nine years on the coaching staff at his alma mater, Indiana University. In that time, the Hoosiers won eight Big Ten titles, advanced to the NCAA College Cup five times and won back-to-back national titles in 1998 and 1999.

Trask spent two seasons as a graduate assistant at IU before joining the staff of legendary head coach Jerry Yeagley full-time in 1993.

In his seven seasons as an assistant to Yeagley, Trask helped guide the Hoosiers to a combined 136-20-6 record. That includes a mark of 67-6-0 over his final three seasons on the IU bench, each of which resulted in a College Cup berth.

He also helped IU players rake in five Big Ten Player of the Year awards, 18 All-America honors, 27 first-team All-Region accolades and 64 All-Big Ten citations. In 1994, he guided Brian Maisonneuve and Todd Yeagley to dual national player of the year honors, with Maisonneuve winning the Hermann Trophy and Yeagley claiming the Missouri Athletic Club Player of the Year award.

Now, Trask replaces Todd Yeagley, who left UW in December to become the head coach at Indiana.

Beyond the college game, Trask served as the men’s senior coach for the Indiana State Soccer Association from 1992-1995 and then spent five years as the group’s coaching director.

He also has worked extensively with U.S. Soccer, most recently serving as an assistant coach for the U.S. under-18 men’s national team at the prestigious Northern Ireland Milk Cup last summer.

A four-year letterwinner for the Hoosiers from 1984-1987, Trask earned a bachelor’s degree in management and a master’s degree in kinesiology from Indiana.

A native of Milwaukee, Trask was married to his wife, Jela, in February 2008 and has a 1-year-old son, Jack.

“As a Wisconsin native, I have a deep appreciation for what has gone into creating this program,” Trask said. “I'm looking forward to continuing to build the tradition that great coaches like Bill Reddan and Jim Launder worked so hard to create at Wisconsin.”

Men's Soccer vs Michigan State
  • Loading Tweets...
    1 second ago