Concordia University Chicago

River Forest, IL 60305
Illinois Midwest
Private Small Developing team



Chris Brown

Chris Brown is entering his second season as head coach for the women's soccer program. The sixth head coach in the history of the program.

"I am very excited to come to Concordia University Chicago and have this opportunity to coach the women’s soccer program," said Brown. "I would like to thank (director of athletics) Pete Gnan and the committee as well as the players who have put their trust in me to lead this program."

A native of Mesa, Arizona, Brown played collegiately at Chandler (AZ) Gilbert Community College for two seasons before transferring to Division I Northern Illinois University. The center back contributed to an eight-game turnaround in his first season at NIU as the Huskies went 12-6-0 and finished second in the MAC, their highest conference finish since 1990. Brown’s senior year in 2005 saw the Huskies go 11-6-2, a season that included a seven-match unbeaten streak.

Brown remained at Northern Illinois following graduation to begin his collegiate coaching career. In 2007, he served as an assistant coach for the men’s program before moving to the women’s program and coaching the NIU goalkeepers for two seasons. Brown also worked as an assistant coach and director of soccer camps at Oregon State University during the 2010-11 season.

In the summer of 2011, Brown’s return to the Chicagoland area resulted in his taking a position as a goalkeepers’ coach with the women’s soccer program at Dominican University. His time at Dominican gave him a very early preview of his new situation. “I was impressed by the level of play in the conference. There are a number of exciting and competitive teams here, and I look forward to leading the Cougars into this level of competition on a regular basis,” said Brown.

Brown’s experience coaching soccer at the club level is equally extensive. Most recently, he was the Director of Coaching for the girls’ program at Campton United Soccer Club of St. Charles, Illinois that manages over 300 players and 17 teams. Brown was named the 2013 Illinois Youth Soccer Girls’ Competitive Coach of the Year and coached State Champions in both U16 Boys and U16 Girls in the Presidents Cup, which took place from the fall 2013 to the spring of 2014. Prior to that, Brown was a staff coach with Campton United from 2006-08 and a Director of Coaching for Northern Illinois FC in DeKalb from 2008 to 2010.

The Olympic Development Program (ODP) has also benefited from Brown’s coaching in recent years. In 2011, he was part of the ODP Region IV staff in Oregon. Since 2013, he has been a staff coach for Illinois Youth Soccer Olympic Development, coaching both boys and girls.

Brown’s coaching credentials are solid (his certifications include a United States Soccer Federation National “A” License and NSCAA Regional and State Goalkeeping Diplomas), so is his commitment to education as evidenced by a BA in psychology and an MA in sports management from Northern Illinois University in 2007 and 2011 respectively.

“I have been privileged to see several of my club players go on to college, and I think I have a good eye for what makes a good college soccer player, both athletically and academically. It is very important that when our players leave Concordia-Chicago, it will be with a degree in hand along with a great soccer playing experience.”

Brown currently resides in Elgin, Illinois with his wife Caitlin and his son Brodie.

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Michael Arango

Michael Arango is entering his second season as an Assistant Women’s Soccer Coach here at Concordia University Chicago

"It is an honor and privilege to have someone with Michael's credentials as a part of our family here at CUC," said Brown. "His wealth of knowledge, passion and ability to teach the game will not only motivate our players but also help CUC reach new heights as a program."

Arango comes to Concordia-Chicago from suburban Wilmette where he served as the Director of Coaching for the Wilmette Wings and was responsible for the U8 to U14 teams. Prior to Wilmette, Arango was the Boys Director of Coaching for Campton United SC in St. Charles, IL. While there, he helped create a comprehensive club curriculum, worked with coaches to create a philosophy and program style of play, led the boys' program into the Midwest Developmental League (one of the tops in the country) and helped with the College Showcase event hosted by the club. The boys' programs won multiple state titles, earned multiple regional berths and were two-time Disney College Showcase Finalists.

Arango, who holds a United States Soccer Federation (USSF) A License, has been involved with the Illinois Youth Soccer Association (IYSA) Olympic Development Program as both a head and assistant coach since 2004 and is part of the USYSA Region II staff (ODP). He is certified to teach the USSF National D and E courses and is currently on the IYSA Coaching Education staff.

In March of 2012, Arango was one of 40 coaches in the country to join the USSF for a coaching education trip to Spain. The group visited Barcelona, Real Madrid, Villareal and Athletico Madrid, going behind the scenes to see what the most successful clubs in the world value and how everything comes together.

Locally, Arango coached at Team Evanston and FC United prior to his time at Campton. He is a graduate of Northeastern Illinois with a BA in elementary education. Arango resides in the Lincoln Park neighborhood of Chicago.

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Micah Middendorf

Micah Middendorf is in his eighth season as head coach of the Concordia men’s soccer program.

Middendorf, a Milwaukee native, played his college soccer at Concordia University Wisconsin where he was a member of the Lake Michigan Conference All-Freshmen team in 2001 and a three-time winner (2002-04) of the school’s Falcon Award, given to the player that “best represents the team on and off the field.”

A team captain for CUW, he started 100 consecutive games at defender in his four years with one goal and six assists and routinely drew the assignment of marking the opponent’s top scorer.

In 2005, Middendorf made the transition to graduate assistant for both the men's and women's programs in Mequon. One of Middendorf's mentors during this time was his older brother Ryan, head coach of CUW's women's team. Although the two of them have dissimilar coaching styles today, the younger Middendorf acknowledges that "Ryan gave me a great early foundation on which to build when I finally had the opportunity to become a head coach."

Middendorf took over the Cougar men’s program at a time when the team was in a transition period. The 2008 roster featured 14 first-year players, and the Cougars endured a rough beginning to the season. As the year progressed, the Cougars came together and raised the level of competition against their opponents, despite finishing with a 1-18-0 record.

Middendorf’s first full recruiting class in 2009 brought in 18 new players, 17 of them freshmen. The Cougars showed progress in finishing with a 4-14-1 record and a 3-8 conference record, the latter two steps up from the previous 1-10-0 finish in the 2008 NAC standings.

In 2010, 14 newcomers joined the program. Although the Cougars battled through a 2-13-4 season, several of the first-year Cougars showed signs of better days to come. In 2011, Middendorf welcomed a record 40 players to the first day of preseason training, half of them new to the program, and followed up with 32 players in all for the first day of 2012.

Middendorf sees a bright future for the Cougar men's program. His optimism stems in part from being able to pitch the advantages of Concordia ("a great opportunity for pursuing a degree while becoming part of a close-knit campus community") to prospective student-athletes. Middendorf can also offer his recruits the opportunity to play college soccer within the NCAA Division III and, more specifically, the Northern Athletics Conference. "I have experienced the fire and energy of the conference," says Middendorf. "I tell our players that if you play soccer here, you will experience the challenge of playing at a high level against the top players at a regional and even a national level." That statement was borne out once again this year in the Cougars’ schedule which featured five non-conference opponents highly regarded in the region.

Middendorf attended Martin Luther High School in Greendale, Wisconsin and earned his degree in exercise physiology from Concordia Wisconsin in 2005. Middendorf and his wife Ashlee are proud parents to 3 1/2-year-old son Luca and 1 1/2-year old daughter Leighton.

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Brendan Mullane

Brendan Mullane entering his second full season as a graduate assistant coach for the men's soccer program

Mullane was a four-year starter at forward and midfield for the Cougars. He played in 69 matches from 2011 to 2014, netting 10 goals and 11 assists. The 2013 season was Mullane's best as he scored a team-leading eight goals including two-goal games against Manchester University, Eureka College and Ripon College.

Mullane earned his BA in communications from CUC in 2015. He will pursue his MBA in sports management and is interested in exploring coaching opportunities.

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