Chris Hughes finished up his seventh year at the helm of the highly successful men's soccer program at Davenport University. In seven seasons, the Panthers have a record of 101-37-11 and won the 2014 NAIA National Championship.
In the teams second year competing in the GLIAC, the Panthers went 3-12-2. The schedule was tough right off the bat for the Panthers. They earned a hard fought draw against #19 Maryville (Mo.) in their very first game of the season. Coach Hughes also earned his 100th career win against Ashland on Sep. 21. Coach Hughes went 2-9-1 in GLIAC play this year. Hughes coached First Team All-GLIAC Stephen Carroll, Second Team-All GLIAC in Brogan Shrimpton, and All-GLIAC Honorable Mention Daire O'Riordan.
Hughes accepted a new challenge in 2017 as the Panthers moved into the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) and as a provisional member of NCAA Division II. The Panthers finished 12-6-1 and placed fourth during the regular season. The team entered the GLIAC Tournament with something to prove and won three straight games to claim the tournament championship. Included in those wins were a 3-1 win over No. 22 Northwood in Midland and a 1-0 win over No. 24 Saginaw Valley State in the championship. Hughes coached GLIAC Offensive Player of the Year in Brogan Shrimpton and GLIAC Defensive Player of the Year in Stephen Carroll. Shrimpton and Carroll were also named D2CCA First Team All-Midwest Region and Shrimpton was D2CCA First Team All-American ending the season with 19 goals.
Hughes guided the 2016 team to a record of 20-2-3 and a final ranking of No. 3 in the NAIA. The Panthers finished second in the WHAC regular season (9-0-2) and were runner-ups in the WHAC Tournament. They received an at-large bid into the NAIA National Tournament and proceeded to advance to the semifinals before being eliminated on penalty kicks after a 0-0 stalemate through 110 minutes. The team captured four wins and two ties against nationally-ranked teams. In total, the team had six NAIA Scholar Athletes and senior TJ Ifaturoti was named CoSIDA First Team Academic All-American. Ifaturoti and senior Jake Love were also named to the NAIA All-American teams.
The program finished as a national quarterfinalist in the NAIA Tournament during the 2015 season with a record of 16-3-3. TJ Ifaturoti (First Team) and Jake Love (Second Team) were both named All-Americans by the NAIA and Hughes was named Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference Coach of the Year.
The 2015 squad won the WHAC regular season title with a 10-0-1 record and advanced to the NAIA Quarterfinals with wins in the tournament over Purdue-Calumet (3-0) and Campbellsville (2-2, advanced 5-4 on PK's). The Panthers scored a total of 54 goals during the season which ranked 30th in the NAIA. The team also yielded just 1.09 goals per contest showing their dominance on the pitch by outscoring their opponent by 30 goals for the season. The team finished the season ranked No. 5 in the nation.
The year 2014 is one to remember for Hughes and the Davenport men's soccer program. With a schedule featuring seven opponents ranked in the NAIA Top 25, the Panthers record of 22-3-1 produced the school's first NAIA national title by a team as well as an appearance in the top of the rankings on two different occasions. Hughes also saw the nation's leading scorer Dzenan Catic win NAIA National Player of the Year and be drafted by the Philadelphia Union with the 31st overall pick of the Major League Soccer SuperDraft. Hughes was also named NSCAA/NAIA National Coach of the Year for guiding the program to the promised land.
The 2013 campaign for the program was a breakout one that saw them set almost every team record at the time, including wins (19) finishing with an overall mark of 19-3. Hughes guided the team to a regular season and tournament championship in the Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference (WHAC) and a berth in the NAIA National Tournament. Hughes coached the WHAC Player of the Year in Dzenan Catic, who also received Honorable Mention NAIA accolades.
In 2012, Hughes guided the Panthers to an 9-8-1 record which was an improvement of five wins from 2011.
Over the 10 years guiding the NCAA Division III program at Calvin, Hughes posted an overall record of 154-48-22 that included seven Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) championships and national tournament appearances as well as a pair of national runner-up finishes. Hughes was named the Great Lakes Regional Coach of the Year in 2004 by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America.
A native of Mt. Clemens, Michigan and a graduate of Lutheran North High School, Hughes then went on to attend Calvin College where he was a two-time All-MIAA honoree. As a marking back on defense, Hughes was named Second Team All-MIAA in 1989 and to the 1st team in 1990. As a senior, Hughes helped anchor a Calvin defensive unit that allowed just six goals in 12 MIAA games on its way to a share of the MIAA title.
After graduating from Calvin he was a member of the Bill and Paul's Soccer Club for eight years. In addition, Hughes served eight years as Calvin's junior varsity men's soccer coach. Hughes graduated from Calvin in 1992 with a degree in business and communications and currently works as a licensed residential real estate agent with the Coldwell Banker-AJS company.
Hughes and his wife Heather reside in Caledonia with their two sons - Kenzie, a member of the current DU team and Caleb.