OREM, Utah — Slated to begin play in 2014, the Utah Valley University men's soccer program took a giant step toward realization Wednesday when it announced the hiring of Greg Maas as the first-ever head coach of Wolverine men's soccer.
The move accelerates the institution's installation of men's soccer into the UVU varsity athletics' fold by the 2014 fall season. Utah Valley Director of Athletics Michael V. Jacobsen announced the addition on Oct. 9, 2012, during a press conference revealing UVU's acceptance of an invitation to join the Western Athletic Conference.
"This is another tremendous milestone in an already exciting time for Wolverine athletics and our forthcoming men's soccer program," Jacobsen said. "Greg Maas is a proven leader with a tremendous passion for his craft. His knowledge of the game is unprecedented and I look forward to seeing this program grow to prominence under his direction."
Most recently and prominently, Maas has served as the technical director for the Utah Youth Soccer Association and as head coach of the Real Salt Lake Utah U-17 team. He brings with him a thorough understanding of all levels of competitive soccer and a deep insight into the development and cultivation of amateur players and student-athletes.
"It's a tremendous honor and privilege to be the first-ever head coach of Wolverine men's soccer, and I look forward to the challenge and opportunity with great anticipation," Maas said. "I also want to share my appreciation and thank my Utah Youth Soccer and Real Salt Lake family for all of their support as I endeavor to build a truly vertically integrated soccer program in Utah here at UVU."
Maas has held tremendous influence within the sphere of Utah state soccer for more than a decade in his capacity as technical director for the UYSA — the governing body for youth soccer within the state of Utah.
Since filling the position in 2001, he has helped to develop and implement playing opportunities to youth players of all ages and ability levels, seeing the number of registered members rise from 25,000 to 45,000 participants during his tenure. He is also responsible for directing the Olympic Development Program — Utah's premier soccer program which highlights some of the most talented and ambitious players in Utah and U.S. Youth Soccer Region IV.
Utah Youth Soccer, the state's affiliate for U.S. Youth Soccer, is the largest youth soccer organization in Utah. U.S. Youth Soccer stands as the largest sports organization in the United States as well as the most populous sector of the U.S. Soccer Federation. Approximately 45,000 athletes between the ages of 4 and 19 are registered with Utah Youth soccer each year, not to mention over 10,000 coaches, administrators and volunteers.
For the last five summers as the RSL U-17 head coach, not to mention his previous decade-long tenure as the Region IV Olympic Development Program staff and age group coach, Maas has had a steady hand in the development of some of Utah's top amateur players. His 2008 U-17 squad claimed the MLS U-17 Cup Championship, while his 2009 and 2010 teams finished in third and second place, respectively.
Maas has also held instructor positions with the National Soccer Coaches Association of America, the United States Soccer Federation and United States Youth Soccer.
Maas holds a U.S. Soccer `A' License, U.S. Soccer National Goalkeeper License, U.S. National Youth License and the NSCAA International Premier Diploma.
"When we began the search for UVU's first men's soccer coach, we had lofty aspirations," said Jared Sumsion, associate athletic director for external operations and men's soccer administrator. "We wanted a steadfast leader, a savvy soccer mind, and someone who would embrace Utah's esteemed soccer community. Based on that criterion, Greg Maas is the complete package."
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