“Train up a child in the way they should go, and when they are old, they will not depart from it.” --Proverbs 22:6
Head Coach Mike Lynch has over three decades of coaching experience including 15 years at the collegiate level. Prior to his appointment at Belmont Abbey College in June 2011, Lynch held head coaching stints at Nebraska Wesleyan University (NCAA DIII), and Truman State University (NCAA DII), and an Assistant Coaching position at the United States Air Force Academy (NCAA DI). Lynch came to the Abbey with a clear mission to graduate leaders committed to excellence and virtue, win the Conference Carolinas and advance at the postseason NCAA national tournament (currently 94W-39L-13T over 7 seasons at Belmont Abbey College). Lynch’s Belmont Abbey teams have played in 6 conference championship finals since 2011 winning titles in 2012 and 2014. During this time, the team also participated in three straight NCAA tournaments advancing to the round of 32 in 2012 and sweet 16 in 2013. In 2015, the team went undefeated 11-0 in conference play to win the Conference Carolinas regular season championship earning Lynch Conference Coach of the Year honors. The team has also earned five straight United Soccer Coaches (formerly the National Soccer Coaches Association of America) Team Academic awards recognizing the team grade point average for both semesters > 3.0. During the Fall 2017 and Spring 2018 semester, the team held the highest GPA average among all the Belmont Abbey athletic teams with averages of 3.45 and 3.53 (on a 4.0 scale). Additionally, the team received recognition by United Soccer Coaches for four straight Team Ethics and Sportsmanship Silver Awards rewarding season long competition without receiving a single red card ejection and less than 6 total yellow card cautions. Similarly, Conference Carolinas recognized the team with 2017 and 2018 Messick Sportsmanship Awards recognizing excellence in sportsmanship among all the women’s soccer programs in Conference Carolinas.
Lynch played college soccer at the Air Force Academy earning All-League and All-Region accolades. Lynch earned the US Soccer Federation National “A” Coaching license in 1992 and the NSCAA “Premier” Diploma and US Soccer Federation National “Youth” Coaching license in 2010. Lynch has been heavily involved in youth soccer since 1985 coaching Olympic Development Program (ODP) and select club soccer teams in Ohio, Colorado, Missouri, Nebraska, and North Carolina. Lynch’s club teams won the 1997 Colorado U-18 girls and 2010 Nebraska U-13 boys state championships. His 2010 U-13 Boys team also won the Region II Fair Play award at the Regional Championships recognizing coach, player and parent sportsmanship. Lynch earned a Master of Science degree from Central Michigan University. In addition to the college coaching profession, Lynch served as an officer in the United States Air Force and also worked as a manager in the healthcare industry. In 2009, Lynch founded WINning Coaching LLC, a company specializing in developing leadership, performance and virtue in business and sport. In 2017, Lynch was appointed the United Soccer Coaches D2 Women’s College representative and the United Soccer Coaches Chair of the Faith-Based Coaches membership group.