On Thursday, December 27, 2018, Auburn University at Montgomery Director of Athletics Jessie Rosa named Matthew Thorne the new head coach of the men’s soccer program at AUM. Thorne, the 2017 Gulf South Conference Coach of the Year, comes to Montgomery from the University of West Alabama in Livingston, Ala., where he began the men’s program in 2012.
“Coach Thorne is a quality person and coach, and tremendous addition to our team,” said Rosa. “His record and achievements speak for themselves and I have every confidence in the future of the AUM men’s soccer program with him at the helm. We are so excited to welcome him home.”
Thorne began his coaching career at AUM in 2007 as a graduate assistant coach under former head coach Wulf Koch, graduating in 2009 with a Master of Business Administration degree. He now becomes the sixth head coach in program history here at AUM.
“Firstly, I would like to thank Chancellor Carl Stockton, Director of Athletics Jessie Rosa and the search committee for giving me the opportunity to coach at Auburn Montgomery again,” said Thorne. “As AUM is my alma mater it has always been a dream to one day come back and coach here. Men’s soccer has a tremendous winning tradition from the NAIA-era, now we hope to be very successful in the NCAA and push AUM on a national level.”
In his first season with the then-Senators AUM won the NAIA Region XIII Championship, reaching the NAIA National Tournament Final Four. After three seasons with AUM Thorne became an assistant coach with Huntingdon College from 2009-2011, before becoming the first head coach in UWA history in August of 2011.
Thorne has amassed a career record of 78-43-9 as the gaffer of UWA men’s soccer, going 48-23-4 in league play. The Tigers won the GSC Tournament Championship four years in a row from 2014-2017, while also winning the regular season championship in 2015 and 2017. In 2017 UWA reached the Third Round of the NCAA Men's Soccer Tournament for the first time in program history while compiling a 16-3-1 record.
In seven seasons with the Tigers have claimed GSC Player of the Year in back-to-back seasons with Thibault Charmey earning the accolade in 2013 and 2014. UWA has had 10 players named to the All-GSC teams, four named All-South Region and one Capital One All-American in 2016 and 2017. In addition, this past season saw Ali Brador named to the 2018 United Soccer Coaches NCAA Division II Men's Scholar All-America Team Third Team.
After the 2018 season Thorne coached the Birmingham Hammers of the fourth-division of the United Soccer League, leading the squad to its most wins in a season in team history.
Thorne is a 2007 graduate from Martin Methodist College in Pulaski, Tenn. with a B.S. in Business and Sport Management, where he played four seasons for the Redhawks. During Thorne’s time at MMC, he helped the team achieve a Trans-South regular season and tournament championship in 2004. Thorne was a three-time all-Trans-South Team selection while garnering all-region and all-American accolades in 2006.
Following his collegiate career, Thorne played with the Palm Beach Pumas in the Professional Development League in the summer of 2006 and played with the semi-professional Icelandic second division team IH Hafnarfjordur in 2008.
Since 2007, Thorne has been a part of the Alabama Olympic Development Program. He also has a USSF National A coaching license to go along with a Level 1 and Level 2 Football Association of Ireland Coaching Badge. A native of Rush, County Dublin, Ireland, Thorne came through the prestigious College Prep program Colaiste Ide where he received “Achiever of the Year” in 2003.
Thorne and his wife Ashley have three daughters, Saoirse, Niamh and Ciara.
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