Will Austin was officially named as the sixth RedHawk Women’s Soccer head coach in the modern era of the program on Friday, Nov. 4, 2016.
Austin had served the program as the Interim Head Coach for the majority of the 2016 season after spending the previous four seasons as the team’s chief assistant.
Under his tenure in 2016, Austin led the RedHawks to a 14-3-3 record and a share of the regular-season Southern States Athletic Conference title. In 2016, the RedHawks rose all the way to No. 2 in the NAIA Women's Soccer Coaches' Top 25 Poll. The mark was the highest for the RedHawks since they were ranked No. 1 after winning the 2007 national title. The RedHawks also advanced to the NAIA Women's Soccer National Championship for a 13th consecutive season under Austin -- the second-longest active streak in the NAIA.
The RedHawks were undefeated at Grissom Pitch in 2016 with wins over No. 3 William Carey, No. 10 Vanguard, No. 11 Grace and earned a draw with No. 7 University of Mobile.
The 14 wins for the RedHawks marked a fifth consecutive season with as many victories and the RedHawks advanced to the Round of 16 of the national tournament for the fourth consecutive campaign.
Austin produced five All-Americans last season, which was tied for the second-most by a single team in the country. Two RedHawks achieved conference superlatives with Linzi Taylor earning Defensive Player of the Year and Riko Sagara earning Freshman of the Year. Millene Cabral and Linzi Taylor were also named NSCAA All-Americans. Six RedHawks earned SSAC All-Conference awards with six more named SSAC All-Academic winners.
Prior to his tenure as a head coach, Austin served under head coach Tyson John as the team's chief assistant. Under John, Austin and the RedHawks boasted a 60-21-2 overall record.
"It is a true honor to follow in the footsteps of Coach Gerry Cleary and Coach Tyson John," Austin said. "They are two of the best coaches in the nation and they both worked hard to establish and maintain Martin Methodist as a perennial powerhouse here in the NAIA. I am grateful beyond words to President Robby Shelton and Athletic Director Jeff Bain for entrusting me as a young coach with this extremely talented group of players. I will do everything in my power to maintain our status as an elite NAIA Women's Soccer program."
Prior to his time at Martin Methodist, as a graduate assistant coach for women's soccer and Director of Operations at Central Michigan University in 2010 and 2011.
During his time at CMU he was involved in all aspects of the program, including recruiting, fundraising, compliance, equipment, practice planning, game management, monitoring academics, scouting and travel. Austin specifically coached defenders and goalkeepers, and also taught classes in the Physical Education department.
In 2010, Central Michigan were MAC Conference and tournament champions and made an NCAA Division I national tournament appearance, losing to No. 12 Marquette 1-0. CMU tallied a .750 overall winning percentage which was 22nd in the nation with a 16-5-1 record. Austin's goalkeepers ranked 10th in the nation with a .552 goals against average.
During the 2011 season, CMU ranked 53rd in the nation in the final RPI standing among Division I (the highest in program history). With a 15-3-3 record, Central Michigan posted a .786 best win-loss-tie percentage in program history, and ranked No. 11 in country in shutout percentage with 13 total shutouts (.619)
CMU had the 11th best winning percentage (.767) and 11th most wins (31) among Division I programs over the 2010-11 seasons, during Austin's stint. Central Michigan was undefeated at home during both years of Austin's coaching and had highest team GPA in the nation (mens/womens soccer, D1/D2/D3/NAIA) both years (3.7). Highlight wins over opponents in power conferences included (2011) at Louisville (Big East) 1-0, at Wisconsin (Big Ten) 2-1; (2010) vs Michigan State (Big Ten) 4-0 and tied Michigan (Big Ten) both seasons
Prior to his time at CMU, Austin was an assistant coach for a year at Urbana University in 2009 as they transitioned from NAIA to NCAA Division II.
Austin played at Limestone College for two years before going on to be an Academic All-American center back at Southern Wesleyan University where he graduated magna cum laude in psychology in 2009. Austin graduated magna cum laude from Central Michigan in May of 2012 with a master's degree in sports administration.
Austin is licensed through the NSCAA, USSF and the Scottish Football Association (SFA). He also has club and high school coaching experience in Michigan and South Carolina, along with experience working for a US sports scholarship consultancy firm in Scotland and Germany.
Born in Stewarton, Scotland, Austin represented youth teams of professional clubs Queen of the South and Queen's Park in Scotland before moving to America at 17.
Austin currently resides in Pulaski with his fiance Katie.