Armstrong Atlantic State University Savannah Georgia.
LOGIN | CONTACT US | DIRECTORY



“The beauty of collegiate athletics is that they learn to deal with failure and they experience what it is like to work hard for a long term goal. It is great preparation for life.”


Faulconer Named 2010 PBC Coach of the Year


Building Success from the Ground Up


Eric Faulconer came to Armstrong in 2005 to start the Pirates women’s soccer program, and in the course of six seasons he has elevated Armstrong’s soccer reputation to a level that recruiting successful student athletes has come down to a matter of answering the phone.

“In the soccer community people know who Armstrong is,” he said. “We get calls from between 300 to 400 students each year who contact us because they want to come here and play soccer.”

It was undoubtedly in part because of his overall success as a coach and current team standings—ranked No. 3 in the country by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) with an overall record of 13-2-2 (November 2010)—that the Peach Belt Conference chose to honor Faulconer with its 2010 Coach of the Year Award. It is the most recent in a string of accolades bestowed upon the Pirates women’s soccer coach who, prior to Armstrong, had learned to build a program from the ground up at Thomas University in South Georgia.

He is also a three-time recipient of the NSCAA Southeast Region Coach of the Year, an award that honors the top coaches in the larger region that is home to the Peach Belt Conference.

But Faulconer—a boyish-looking father of two who grew up in Naples and Tallahassee—is quick to divert attention and credit to the players themselves.

“These kids work on homework by flashlight during late night bus rides back to campus after a game somewhere,” he said. “They get home late and tired, but they get up early the next morning because they know it is important for them to be in class.”

In recent years, Faulconer has seen firsthand the caliber of incoming student athletes increase dramatically.

“We recruit players with lots of character who are good in the classroom,” he said. “Kids who are successful in high school and bring an element of expectation to be successful and who are driven. When you have 20 kids who are like that, you can build a competitive program.”

Among his biggest challenges is to get young players to understand the importance of setting long- term goals and working hard to achieve them.

“The beauty of collegiate athletics is that they learn to deal with failure and they experience what it is like to work hard for a long term goal. It is great preparation for life.”

They work they do goes beyond the soccer field and the classroom.

“These are same kids who are active in the community, coaching, student teaching or officiating a game somewhere, while maintaining GPAs that each year hover around 3.4 for the team. My wish is for more people to come out and watch them play, watch them do what they love to do, while learning to be successful in life.”