Grant Williams named SIU Women’s Soccer head coach

By Brian Munoz, Photography and Multimedia Editor

Grant Williams has been named as the first SIU Women’s Soccer head coach, during a press conference held Monday afternoon.

Williams is the former assistant women’s soccer coach at the University of Evansville and will head the new women’s soccer program as they prepare for competition in Fall 2019 and will enter into the Missouri Valley Conference in 2020, according to a press release.

Williams will receive $60,000 as an annual salary with the option of receiving increases in salary at any time – if deemed appropriate by the director, approved by the Board of Trustees and accepted in writing by the coach, according to hiring contracts.

During his time as a Division I assistant coach, Williams has coached 47 All-Conference players throughout his career and four CoSIDA Academic All-Americans.

During his six-season tenure at Evansville, the Purple Aces won two conference championships and advanced to the 2015 NCAA Tournament.

The program also made three appearances in the championship match of the MVC Tournament.

The addition of the women’s soccer team was announced in January after SIU Athletics was found non-compliant with federal Title IX guidelines.

“Coach Williams is someone who has all the skills necessary to build a program from scratch,” said SIU Acting Director of Athletics Jerry Kill, through a press release. “He is a proven recruiter, a skilled administrator and an excellent teacher and motivator – he is someone who will come in and embrace the culture of southern Illinois and build a Division I soccer program the right way.”

Jerry Kill, originally appointed as a special assistant to the chancellor, recently replaced former SIU Athletic Director Tommy Bell, after administration chose to not renew his contract.

SIU President Randy Dunn criticized Bell’s addition of the women’s soccer team, in a memo sent in January that was obtained by the Daily Egyptian.

“In the end, I am hopeful this did not become a backdoor way to implement a new and more expensive sport without making the case in regular fashion to drop one and start another,” Dunn said in the memo.

Krista McKendree, head women’s soccer coach at the University of Evansville said she was happy for Williams.

“He is of the highest caliber character you will find in college athletics,” McKendree said. “SIU could not have found someone who wants this job more.”

Photography and multimedia editor Brian Muñoz can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter at @BrianMMunoz.

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