After a surprising resignation by BYU Cougars previous Head Coach, the Cougars were in the market for a couple of coaches to take the reigns. Less than a week apart the new Head Coach and the new Assistant Coach were announced and they didn't have to look far to find their guys. Both coaches have ties to the program and are happy to be back in Cougar blue.
The new Head Coach is Brandon Gilliam who has been part of the Cougars program since 2002, back when BYU was a club team and not part of the semi-professional ranks. During that time Gilliam was a goalkeeper for the Cougars and started in four of his five years on the roster. In his final year as a player, Gilliam led the nation in goals against, putting his game knowledge and abilities on display. In 2008 he graduated from BYU and returned as an assistant coach o the men's team in that same year. Based on his comments in the press release, he is excited for the opportunity, and should be the right man for the job:
I am beyond excited to continue on this tradition of producing successful, talented young me who will not only be great soccer players but will have the tools needed to take on the challenges they will face. -Brandon Gilliam
Helping Gilliam to run the program will be new Assistant Soccer Coach Steve Magelby. Magelby is another former player that spent his college years at BYU. He played on the Cougars 2002 team and then again from 2005-2009. The last two years of his time at BYU were spent as a team captain. In 2007 he showed his versatility and talent as he also played with the RSL reserves. After some time playing professionally in Denmark, Magelby returned as a coaching assistant for BYU as well as for a professional team in Chile, Lo Barnechea FC. In his press release Magelby said:
I'm excited for the chance to work with the team again this year. Coach Gilliam has some great plans for the team and I'm grateful for the opportunity to work with him in accomplishing those goals and continuing the success of the BYU men's soccer program. - Steve Magelby
With two new men at the helm, and men who have learned from former Head Coach Chris Watkins, the Cougars soccer program has been left in good hands. Although last year was a down year for the Cougars, expect the team to rebound and show what type of team they really are. Coach Watkins had high hopes for this upcoming year before he stepped down and leaves Gilliam and his staff with talent that can once again compete with the league as they look to return to the playoffs.