Q: Where did you go to school? When did you join the UM Athletics program?
St. Anselm College. I started as the Assistant Men’s Soccer Coach in late July of 2010
Q: How did you get to be the head coach?
In August of 2012, I took an assistant coaching job at a D1 school. When the opportunity presented itself to comeback to get a shot at the Head Coaching position, I didn’t hesitate. That was in February of 2013.
Q: What started your interest in soccer?
My older brother got into it at an early age so obviously I wanted to follow in his footsteps. Because I started so early, I was able to develop skills that made me a little better. It gave me confidence, which led to a passion for the game.
Q: How did you get into coaching?
It’s started as a summer job in College. I worked with the club I played for growing up. They had summer programs that would work with 3-13 years old.
Q: Could you describe your philosophy as a coach?
It’s a broad question. I have a couple that focus on different aspects. My soccer specific is to break pressure then attack space and then defensively make teams play into uncomfortable situations. From an overall coach’s philosophy, I want to make sure players can look back at their time at Montevallo as valuable and hopefully some of their best growth as a human being.
Q: How do you feel that your time as a player influenced this philosophy?
Every stop on my playing and coaching track has affected my philosophy. It’s an evolution as I see things I think are more important in the game.
Q: What are you looking for most from prospective/current players
A player isn’t one attribute, which makes that hard to answer. I like some combination of a competitor, soccer brain, maturity, technical ability, and drive.
Q: What do you think that the most damaging myth about college athletics programs is?
The myth that success is guaranteed. Sports can be unfair and harsh. There is a lot of opportunity, timing, and luck that is involved. You can work your entire life but still not reach your goals. The beauty of college athletics is that players can give themselves the opportunity for greatness. To grow as a person through commitment to something they love and derive happiness from. Letting a player challenge themselves to be pure in their commitment to something they love.
Q: How do you feel that UM Athletics sets itself apart from other D-II programs?
On the surface, it’s the facilities, and the support they get from the staff, coaches, trainers, etc., but once you get deeper, it’s in the people that choose UM. Montevallo finds you for a reason. You chose Montevallo for a feeling. Those all add up to strong relationship with friends, teachers, and coaches that change you for the better.
Q: How do you measure your success as a coach?
I’d be lying if I didn’t have wins a losses as an indicator but if you are asking what matters to me, its seeing play players grow into responsible adults who make great choices in life based on their experiences with in my program.
Q: Is there something that you feel separates soccer from other sports?
I have a bias but that should be obvious. Soccer is a unique sport with a unique place in the college landscape right now.
Q: How do you feel soccer at a college level is impacted by soccer’s more dominant presence as a professional sport in other parts of the world?
College soccer is another tool for our players and professional teams in and out of the USA. It gives second chances to a lot of those whom have been mistreated by their professional systems. There is a very strong value in a system that does that. It also does something that no other league in the world does. It is give players the opportunity to fall back on a legitimate education.
Waid Jones was the editor-in-chief of The Alabamian during the 2019–2020 academic year. In 2018, while managing editor of The Alabamian, he received the Veterans of Influence Rising Star Award from the Birmingham Business Journal. Prior to coming to UM he was in the U.S. Marine Corps for two and a half years. Jones graduated with a degree in political science from UM in 2020. He is currently the news editor for the Jackson County Sentinel in Scottsboro, Alabama.