Al Albert (soccer)
February 24, 1949 |
|Coaching career (HC unless noted)|
|1971–2003||William & Mary|
|Head coaching record|
|Accomplishments and honors|
|29 Consecutive Winning Seasons (1976–2004), CAA Tournament Titles (1987, 1995, 1996, 1999 and 2000), CAA Regular Season Titles (1987, 1992, 1995, 1996 and 2002), NCAA Elite-8 Appearances (1980, 1996), NCAA Tournament Appearances (1983, 1987, 1992–93, 1995–2000, and 2002), ECAC-South Title (1983)|
|CAA Coach of the Year (1987, 1992, 1994 and 1996), South Atlantic Region Coach of the Year (1992, 1998 and 2002), DC-VA Soccer Hall of Fame 2005, NSCAA Honor Award 2012, Hampton Roads Sports Hall of Fame 2014|
Al Albert is an American college soccer coach. Albert is best known for his longstanding tenure as the head coach of the William & Mary Tribe men's soccer program in Williamsburg, Virginia.
As a young man, Albert attended Baltimore City College High School ('65). In those years, Albert was an avid sports fan passionately supporting Baltimore professional sports teams and playing neighborhood lacrosse. Albert left Baltimore to study at The College of William & Mary ('69) where he played lacrosse and soccer and majored in sociology.
Coaching at William and Mary
In 1971 at the age of 21, Albert accepted an offer to be the full-time coach of the men's lacrosse and soccer programs at The College of William and Mary. Over time his love for lacrosse gave way to the world's game – soccer became increasing popular both on campus and across the country – by 1977 he was focusing exclusively on soccer at W&M.
Albert led the William and Mary "Tribe" men’s soccer team as head coach for 33 seasons before retiring from coaching in January 2004. He amassed a record of 401–187–64 (.664) during his tenure and became just the eighth coach in NCAA Division I history to reach 400 wins, and just the third to have earned all those wins at one school. Throughout the 1990s, the Tribe ranked as one of the top programs in the nation, placing eighth in wins (149) and 13th in winning percentage (.708).
Under his supervision, the Tribe strung together 29 consecutive winning seasons and 26 straight campaigns of 10 wins or more. This level of winning consistency has only been matched by a handful of elite soccer programs across the country: UCLA, Clemson, St. Louis, Indiana, SMU, and UVA.
Many of Albert's former players at William and Mary went on to have successful professional soccer careers; while many distinguished themselves in other ways outside the game. A great communicator, one of Al's trademarks at W&M was the way he connected personally with his players on and off the field – even after graduation.
In tribute to Albert's lasting impact on the landscape of sport at William and Mary, the university hosts all of its home soccer and lacrosse games at Albert-Daly Field, named after Albert and long-time women's soccer head coach John Daly.
In 2010 Al Albert authored the historical record William and Mary Men's Soccer (Images of Sports), published by Arcadia Publishing as part of their Images of Sports series. The book is a 45-year retrospective of the program, and contains a foreword written by Tribe soccer's most famous alumnus, Jon Stewart of the Daily Show.
The Soccer Community Partnership in Williamsburg, VA was founded by Albert in 2003 after his retirement from college coaching. The organization exists to provide local elementary school children the opportunity to play organized soccer regardless of socio-economic status. All of the programs are made possible by private donations and a legion of devoted volunteers. Hundreds of local children have participated in clinics, after-school activities, and the local recreational league through the Soccer Community Partnership.
Albert assumed the role of head coach of the U.S. men's open soccer team at the 1981 and 1985 Maccabiah Games in Israel, earning the silver medal in 1981. More recently, he assisted Amos Magee at the 2007 Pan-Am Maccabiah Games where the U.S. men's open team won the gold medal defeating the host Argentina 2–0 in the final game.
The National Soccer Coaches Association of America ("NSCAA") is the largest single sport coaching organization in the world. In 2006, out of 22,000 members worldwide, Al Albert was elected to serve as the NSCAA's 60th President. Today Albert continues to be an active statesman within the organization, where he supports various coaching and developmental initiatives. Albert was selected by the NSCAA as the 2011 recipient of the Association’s Honor Award. The prestigious Honor Award is the final presentation given annually at the NSCAA Awards Banquet.
Tidewater Soccer Camp
Al Albert owned and operated Tidewater Soccer Camp for over 35 years. Tidewater Soccer Camp provided a soccer camping experience to thousands of young men and women from 1974 to 2009.
The Williamsburg Wizards were a dominant youth soccer team, based in Williamsburg, Virginia. Albert coached the Wizards for ten seasons; and his son was a player on the team. The Wizards, consisting of boys born in 1979 and 1980, traveled across the country and Europe competing against the best teams in their age group. At home, the team won six Virginia State Cup championships at u-11, u-13, u-14, u-15, u-16, and u-19.
William & Mary
- Jon Stewart '84 – Host of the Daily Show with Jon Stewart on Comedy Central
- Mark Goldberg – Former owner/chairman of Crystal Palace Football Club (played '82 and '83 only)
- Steve Christie – NFL veteran kicker (played spring only)
- Curtis Pride – Major League Baseball outfielder and designated hitter (played spring only)
- Greg Lalas – Soccer journalist (played '90 only)
- Scott Budnick '93 – American professional soccer player
- Paul Grafer '96 – American professional soccer player and US Soccer Youth National Team Assistant Coach
- Steve Jolley '97 – American professional soccer player
- Wade Barrett '98 – American professional soccer player and MLS Assistant Coach
- Adin Brown '00 – American professional soccer player
- Ralph Bean '02 – Bermudian soccer player and coach
- Carlos Garcia '03 – Colombian professional soccer player
- Jeff Agoos, 1985 World Maccabiah selection – American professional soccer player
- Matt Behncke, Williamsburg Wizards – American professional soccer player
- Daniel Cruz, Tidewater Soccer Camp – Colombian professional soccer player
- Jarryd Goldberg, 2007 Pan-Am Maccabiah selection – American professional soccer player
- Noah Palmer, Williamsburg Legacy – American professional soccer player
- Gonzalo Segares, Williamsburg Legacy – Costa Rican professional soccer player
Albert resides in Williamsburg, Virginia with his wife. They have two children.
- William and Mary Men's Soccer (Images of Sports) – Arcadia Publishing 2010 – Al Albert
- Albert-Daly Field http://tribeathletics.com/story.php/10568/
- Al Albert is Just a ‘Part of the Team’ http://web.wm.edu/news/archive/index.php?id=2909
- VA Legacy Community Partnership "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-06-24. Retrieved 2011-04-13.
- NSCAA Bio http://www.nscaa.com/subpages/20060721113233343.php
- Soccer Results – 2007 PanAm Games http://www.maccabiusa.com/2007-pan-american-games/233-soccer-results-07-panam-games.html
- NSCAA Award Announcement http://www.nscaa.com/news/2011/11/albert-to-receive-honor-award
- NSCAA Honor Award http://www.nscaa.com/awards/more/honor
- Tidewater Soccer Camp Website http://www.tidewatersoccercamp.com/
- 1986–1990 VYSA State Cup Champions www.vysa.com
- 1991–1995 VYSA State Cup Champions www.vysa.com
- 1996–2000 VYSA State Cup Champions www.vysa.com
- Tribe Club – About Tribe Club – Staff http://www.tribeclub.com/staff.html