June 20, 2013
EVANSTON, Ill. – Northwestern head men’s soccer coach Tim Lenahan announced today that Jeff Oleck will join the program as an assistant coach. Oleck spent the last four seasons coaching at his alma mater, Valparaiso. He was an assistant coach for three seasons before his appointment as associate head coach during the 2012 campaign.
"Jeff will be a great addition to Northwestern,” Lenahan said. “His dad and grandmother were both Northwestern alums so he comes here knowing the special place that Northwestern is. He did a great job, particularly with the goalkeepers at Valparaiso, helping lead them to a Horizon League Championship in 2011. Like all of the assistant coaches we have had here, he has great character and integrity and will be another great assistant coach at Northwestern."
“I want to thank head coach Tim Lenahan
and Vice President for Athletics and Recreation, Jim Phillips, for the opportunity to work at Northwestern,” Oleck said. “I have strong family ties to Northwestern with my dad and grandmother both being graduates. I am really looking forward to helping the program continue and build upon its incredible success. I am just really excited to be here and ready to get to work."
Oleck replaces former NU assistant Mike Babst who recently was named head coach at the University of Chicago. Babst was the third member of Lenahan’s staff to earn a head coaching position in just the last 15 months (Neil Jones – Loyola, Rich Nassif – Benedictine University) and the 16th member (10 at Northwestern) of Lenahan’s coaching tree picked to lead a program.
Oleck, who worked primarily with the goalkeepers at Valparaiso, joins a Wildcat squad that boasted one of the top defenses in the conference the last two years en route to Northwestern’s back-to-back Big Ten regular-season titles. Oleck will work with another already accomplished goalkeeper at Northwestern as two-time first team All-Big Ten honoree Tyler Miller returns to the net for the ’Cats as a junior in 2013.
While at Valparaiso, Oleck helped guide the Crusaders to the Horizon League regular-season title in 2011 and the team had one of the best defensive seasons in program history, surrendering just 14 goals in 20 games. He coached two Horizon League Goalkeeper of the Year winners to three awards in 2009, 2011 and 2012 and guided the program to new single-season records for goals-against average (0.66), fewest goals surrendered (14) and shutouts (11) during the 2011 campaign.
Oleck began his college coaching career at Wabash College (Crawfordsville, Ind.) in 2006 and spent three years as an assistant coach, working with the goalkeepers and serving as recruiting coordinator. In his time at Wabash, he helped coach nine All-NCAC selections and shaped the Little Giants defense with his goalkeeping expertise, as the team sliced over half a goal off its goals-against average during Oleck’s time there.
Oleck also has gained significant coaching experience outside the collegiate realm. He previously served as the Senior Program Director of Coaching for Northwest Indiana United F.C., a premier soccer club based out of Chesterton, Ind. He also served as NWI United's goalkeeper trainer, and was an assistant coach with the 95 Girl's Midwest Regional League team. As the Indiana Olympic Development Program (ODP) goalkeeper coach, Oleck has worked with various other camps and clinics such as the Indiana Goalkeeper Academy, Indiana Soccer Camp and Valpo VIP Camp. In addition, Oleck was the head coach for the Dynamo U16 boys squad in 2008, which won the Indiana Soccer League and qualified for the State Cup quarterfinals. He also guided the Dynamo U15 squad to CIYSL and Challenge Cup titles in 2007.
A four-year starter in the net for the Crusaders, Oleck earned Second Team All-Mid-Continent Conference honors in 2005 after a season in which he registered a 1.71 goals-against average, then third-lowest in program history, and five shutouts, then second-most in a single season all-time at Valpo. He ended his four-year career with a school-record 14 shutouts and a 2.05 GAA, then second-lowest in program history. He also tallied 345 saves in goal for his career, second-most all-time at Valpo and third in Mid-Con history.
Oleck graduated from Valparaiso in 2006 with a degree in biology, along with a business administration minor, and he went on to earn his masters in sports administration in 2011. He holds his NSCAA Advanced National Goalkeeper Diploma and the USSF National “A” License.
Lenahan is entering his 13th season at the helm of the Northwestern men’s soccer program. His staff for the 2013 campaign also includes assistant coach Joe Ahearn, who joined the program in February of 2013, volunteer assistant coach Ovidio Felcaro (12th season) and director of operations Norm Hillner (second season).
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