Director of Athletics and Recreation Sonny Travis will add head men's soccer coach to his title at Coe College beginning with the 2019 season.
He replaces Matt Travis who resigned to accept the assistant soccer position at Amherst College in Massachusetts.
"We will miss Matt," said Larry Lee, vice president of facilities and operations. "He did an exceptional job with our men's soccer program this past year. He connected with our players, the men's soccer alumni and recruited a strong class of incoming student-athletes for the fall."
Sonny Travis has an extensive coaching background in collegiate men's soccer that spans 31 seasons. He amassed a 416-139-51 record from 1986-2016 at three different schools. He is one of only 43 coaches across all divisions to have reached 400 career victories.
"We are committed to making the men's soccer program and all of our sports successful," said Travis. "I am excited to be coaching again and look forward to further building the men's soccer program here at Coe."
Travis began his collegiate coaching tenure at Centre College in Kentucky in 1986 where he compiled a 24-18-6 record over three seasons.
After his time at Centre, Travis moved on to a very successful 18-year tenure (1989-2006) at Virginia Wesleyan College (now Virginia Wesleyan University). He became the program's winningest coach after amassing a 270-74-31 record. A 2013 inductee to the Virginia Wesleyan Athletic Hall of Fame, Travis guided the Marlins to 13 NCAA Tournament appearances, advancing to six regional finals and two sweet sixteen appearances. He was honored as Coach of the Year 15 times through various organizations, including KAPPA National Coach of the Year in 1997. His squads won nine Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) regular season championships and eight ODAC tournament crowns. He coached 11 All-Americans, including the 1992 NCAA Division III National Player of the Year.
At Virginia Wesleyan, Travis served as both athletic director and head men's soccer coach for the final eight years during his time at the institution.
Travis went to Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia in 2007 and delivered another successful stint compiling a record of 122-47-14 over 10 seasons. He guided five Eagles' squads to NCAA Tournament berths with one sweet sixteen appearance. His teams won two University Athletic Association (UAA) championships and was named UAA Coach of the Year in 2008. He coached four more players to All-American accolades.
"I am delighted that Sonny Travis is assuming the role of head men's soccer coach," said Lee. "He has proven himself at several institutions and over a distinguished career to be one of the nation's finest soccer coaches.
"Sonny is a student-centered professional that will provide the very best in experiences both on and off the field. I am truly excited about the future of our men's soccer program."
Travis holds a United States Soccer Federation "A" License and a National Soccer Coaches Association of America Premier Diploma.
Coe College Head Men's Soccer Coach Sonny Travis announces the hiring of Kyle Bakas as an assistant coach for the men's soccer program beginning this fall.
"I am extremely excited to be a part of the Coe men's program," said Bakas. "The opportunity to work with a coach as experienced as Sonny Travis is rare and I am eager to begin learning from such an accomplished coach. The best part of any coaching opportunity though is working with the players and I cannot wait to meet them in the preseason."
Bakas brings an extensive soccer coaching background that spans various age levels. He comes from Montana where he was the executive director/director of coaches for Billings United. He successfully merged two competing soccer clubs which saw the number of registrants and revenue grow exponentially.
Prior to working in Montana, Bakas was head coach of the Duluth FC, an amateur men's soccer club in Minnesota (2016-17). In his second season with the club, Bakas directed the team to a North Conference championship in the National Premier Soccer League.
Bakas brings experience at the collegiate level as well. He was an assistant men's/women's coach at Lake Superior College. He helped improve a first-year program with zero wins to a second-place seeding in the region in the second season.
"We are excited and fortunate to have Kyle join our athletic department and the men's soccer program," said Travis. "I was impressed with his college, club, and professional soccer experiences. His Midwest connections from coaching in Minnesota will be an asset in our recruiting."
Bakas holds USSF Senior A, USSF National B, and NSCAA Premier Diploma soccer coaching licenses.