FEBRUARY 1, 2012
DES MOINES, Iowa - Drake men's soccer assistant coach Joe Burger has been selected as the first-ever head coach at the South Dakota School of Mines. The Hardrockers are slated to begin play on the NCAA Division II level in the fall of 2012.
"I'm excited about the opportunity to build a program from scratch for the second time in my coaching career," commented Burger. "Not many coaches get to do it once, but to have opportunity to do it twice, and at a school like Mines, will be an exciting challenge."
Drake posted a 63-41-16 mark in six years with Burger on the sidelines, including earning the Bulldogs' initial NCAA Tournament berth in 2008 and Drake's run to the Elite Eight in 2009.
Named one of the 2008 Top-12 Assistant Coaches in the country by The College Soccer News, Burger was in charge of overseeing the team's academic progress, which earned the Bulldogs the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA)/Adidas Team Academic award three times.
During his tenure, Drake received 36 All-Missouri Valley Conference and 25 All-MVC Scholar-Athlete selections, respectively. Nine times Bulldogs were chosen NSCAA Academic All-Americans.
"My time at Drake has provided me invaluable experience to be successful leading a collegiate soccer program," said Burger. "The memories I have of the student-athletes that I've worked with at Drake hold a special place in my heart and no one can replace the good times we've had."
"I'm appreciative of the opportunity Coach Holmes has afforded me to help grow the Drake men's soccer program. I'd also be remiss if I didn't thank Sandy (Hatfield Clubb) and Heather (Weems) for their leadership and commitment to the program and willingness to mentor me to help prepare myself to be successful in my career endeavors."
"I'm excited that Joe has earned this most-deserved opportunity where he will get the chance to build a new program from the ground up at a strong academic institution," said Bulldog head coach Sean Holmes. "In his six years at Drake, he helped take us to the next level in every facet and he will be missed by our players and alumni and by the youth soccer community in Central Iowa. His knowledge and passion for the game will serve him well in his newest challenge, our program is indebted to him."