Caleb Porter

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Caleb Porter
Caleb Porter cropped.jpg
Porter as Portland Timbers head coach in March 2015
Personal information
Date of birth (1975-02-18) February 18, 1975 (age 40)
Place of birth Tacoma, Washington, United States
Height 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)
Playing position Midfielder
Youth career
1994–1997 Indiana Hoosiers
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1998–1999 San Jose Clash 4 (0)
1999 Sacramento Geckos (loan) 2 (0)
1999–2000 Tampa Bay Mutiny 7 (0)
Teams managed
2000–2005 Indiana University (assistant)
2006–2012 University of Akron
2011–2012 United States U23
2013– Portland Timbers
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).

Caleb Porter is an American soccer coach who is currently the head coach of the Portland Timbers of Major League Soccer. He was previously head coach of the United States U-23 team, and the University of Akron men's team from 2006 to 2012.

A former midfielder, he played college soccer for Indiana University before his short professional career in Major League Soccer and the United Soccer League was ended by persistent knee injuries.


Porter attended Indiana University where he played on the men’s soccer team from 1994 to 1997. He graduated in 1997 with a Bachelor's degree in sports management. In February 1998, the San Jose Clash selected Porter with the 3rd round (27th overall) in the 1998 MLS College Draft. He did not join the Clash until 1999 but his tenure there was short - he made just four appearances and, in his one start, was ejected in the 32nd minute.[1] Following that performance, the Clash sent him on loan to the Sacramento Geckos of the A-League [2] before waiving him in June. He quickly returned to MLS after being signed by the Tampa Bay Mutiny in July.[3] He suffered from several knee injuries and had arthroscopic surgery on both knees during the off season before retiring on June 30, 2000.[4] In 1997, Porter was a member of the U.S. soccer team which took the bronze medal at the 1997 World University Games.


In 2000, Porter returned to Indiana University as an assistant soccer coach. After Ken Lolla left the University of Akron in December 2005, the Zips hired Porter as head soccer coach. After taking the Zips to two consecutive Mid-American Conference titles, and being named the 2007 MAC Coach of the Year, Porter signed a two year contract extension in June 2008.

Following Akron's near-perfect season of 2009, Porter was rumored to be in talks with Major League Soccer club D.C. United about their vacant head coaching position.[5] However, the University of Akron and Porter agreed on terms of a new contract, keeping him in Akron for the next five years.[6]

Under Porter, the 2010 Akron squad captured the NCAA Men's Division I Soccer Championship, defeating the Louisville Cardinals 1-0.[7]

Porter was named the head coach of the U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team on October 20, 2011 while retaining his duties as coach of the Akron Zips.[8] His first task was attempting to guide the U-23 team to a successful qualifying run in March 2012 for the 2012 Olympic Games in London; however, following a 2-0 loss to Canada and a 3-3 draw with El Salvador, the Americans were eliminated.

On August 29, 2012, it was announced that he would become the head coach of MLS club Portland Timbers after the conclusion of the 2012 NCAA season.[9]

Porter was named the MLS Coach of the Year, after a rookie season that saw the Timbers compile a 14-5-15 season record (57 points), finishing first in the Western Conference and in doing so establishing the coaching style that is now known by supporters as Porterball, which relies on holding and passing the ball around in a circle for 87 minutes before finally attempting to score a last minute goal for a win, known also as possession without purpose.[10] In the 2014 MLS All-Star Game, Porter coached an all-star team to a 2-1 victory against Bayern Munich. Bayern manager Pep Guardiola was angry with some tackles from behind and rejected a post-match handshake with Porter.[11]

Head coaching record[edit]


Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Akron Zips (Mid-American Conference) (2006–2012)
2006 Akron 14-6-1 4-0-1 1st
2007 Akron 15-4-2 5-0-1 1st NCAA 2nd Round
2008 Akron 17-2-4 6-0-0 1st NCAA 3rd Round
2009 Akron 23-0-2 6-0-0 1st NCAA Finals
2010 Akron 22-1-2 6-0-0 1st NCAA Champions
2011 Akron 15-4-4 6-0-0 1st NCAA 3rd Round
2012 Akron 13-1-2 6-0-0 1st NCAA 3rd Round
Total: 119-18-17

      National champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion


  1. ^ "SJ vs. KC 4/10/99". Sporting Kansas City. 1999-04-10. Retrieved 2013-04-16. 
  2. ^ GECKOS FACE HIGH HOPES, STEEP OBSTACLES The Sacramento Bee - Friday, April 23, 1999
  3. ^ Scoring prowess major part of striker's promise St. Petersburg Times - Wednesday, July 21, 1999
  4. ^ "June 30, 2000 Transactions". New York Times. 2000-06-30. Retrieved 2012-08-29. 
  5. ^ Goff, Steve (2009-12-10). "Soccer Insider - Fire Interviews Fraser". Retrieved 2012-08-29. 
  6. ^ Beaven, Michael (2009-12-15). "UA soccer coach to stay with Zips". Akron Beacon Journal. Retrieved 2009-12-15. 
  7. ^ "The Gold Standard: Men's Soccer Captures National Title" Retrieved December 11, 2010
  8. ^ Silverstein, Max (2011-10-20). "Porter and Ramos announced as new U-23 & U-20 coaches". Retrieved 2012-08-29. 
  9. ^ Amerika, Prost (2012-08-29). "Caleb Porter is New Timbers Coach". Retrieved 2012-08-29. 
  10. ^
  11. ^

External links[edit]