ACC Coach of the Year: 2002, 2004, 2006, 2008 & 2009
NSCAA National Coach of the Year: 2007 & 2008
Walt Chyzowych Award: 2008
NSCAA South Region Coach of the Year: 2002
Jay Vidovich, one of America’s most respected and accomplished soccer coaches, was named the third Pitt men’s soccer head coach at the University of Pittsburgh in December of 2015.
Following his first year at the helm, Vidovich led the Panthers to wins over No. 7 Notre Dame, No. 13 Columbia and No. 21 Syracuse in the 2017 season. The win against Syracuse would be the Panthers’ first win over a ranked opponent since the 2008 season. The victory over the Orange was also the first conference win for Pitt since moving into the ACC at the start of the 2013 season, and they would add their second conference win against the Fighting Irish on Oct. 13. The Panthers would also capture victories against rivals Penn State and West Virginia throughout the season.
Vidovich also guided four players to All-ACC recognition, with Javi Perez earning Second Team honors, Pol Planellas receiving Third Team recognition and both Alexander Dexter and Edward Kizza being named to the All-Freshman Team. The postseason accolades were the team’s first in program history since joining the ACC.
Planellas would go on to become the first Pitt men’s soccer player in program history to be drafted by an MLS Club team after being selected by the Los Angeles Football Club in the second round of the 2018 MLS SuperDraft, becoming the 36th professional player under Vidovich’s tutelage.
Prior to making the move to Pittsburgh, Vidovich oversaw the men’s soccer program at Wake Forest for 21 seasons (1994-2014), building the Demon Deacons into a national power and winning the 2007 NCAA championship. He spent 2015 in professional soccer, coaching the Portland Timbers 2 (T2) in the United Soccer League (USL).
During his Wake Forest tenure, Vidovich compiled a 272-121-50 record and led the Demon Deacons to the NCAA Tournament in 13 of his final 14 seasons. Wake Forest won five Atlantic Coast Conference titles under his watch, compiling a 76-52-22 mark in one of the nation’s most challenging leagues.
In 2007, Wake Forest went 22-2-2—the winningest season in school history—and defeated Ohio State, 2-1, in the national final to claim the program’s first NCAA title. The Demon Deacons made four consecutive appearances in the College Cup from 2006-09.
Vidovich, a two-time National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) National Coach of the Year (2007 and 2008) and five-time ACC Coach of the Year (2002, 2004, 2006, 2008 and 2009), ranks among the most decorated coaches in collegiate soccer.
Vidovich was the 2008 recipient of the prestigious Walt Chyzowych Award for lifetime contributions to the sport of soccer. Vidovich was an assistant under the legendary Chyzowych for eight seasons at Wake Forest from 1986-93.
Widely regarded as one of the game’s top evaluators and developers of talent, Vidovich has produced 21 All-Americans and five ACC Player of the Year honorees (three offensive and two defensive). He also coached Marcus Tracy, the first player in Wake history to win the Missouri Athletic Club’s (MAC) Hermann Trophy, which honors the top individual player in college soccer.
Thirty-five players under Vidovich went on to play in the professional ranks from 2002-14. His Wake Forest teams also achieved academically, evidenced by two ACC Scholar-Athlete of the Year honorees, two Academic All-Americans, one adidas National Scholar-Athlete of the Year and one Senior CLASS Award recipient.
Born in Detroit, Mich., Vidovich was an all-state player for New Canaan High School in Connecticut. He played for Indiana University in 1978 before transferring to Ohio Wesleyan, where he was a three-year starter. As a senior, Vidovich was team captain and helped lead OWU to the semifinals of the NCAA Tournament.
A 1982 graduate of Ohio Wesleyan with a bachelor’s degree in physical education, he went on to earn a master’s degree in sports sciences from the University of Denver in 1983.
It was at Denver where Vidovich’s coaching career was launched as an assistant in 1982. He served in additional assistant posts at Regis College (1983) and his alma mater Ohio Wesleyan (1984-85) before joining Wake Forest’s staff in 1986.