Third Year Head Coach Continues To Build Rebel Program
Rob Thompson enters his fifth year as an assistant coach in charge of goalkeepers in 2014.
The 2013 season saw the Rebel defense help Ole Miss to a record-setting 16 wins that included 10 shutout victories behind the play of junior goalkeeper Kelly McCormick. The keeper became the winningest goalkeeper in program history, 34 victories for her career under the tutelage of Thompson.
In the 2012 season, McCormick helped the Rebels post eight shutout victories, including a stretch of four-consecutive shutouts as Ole Miss rolled to an 8-0 start to set the best start to a season in program history. In that stretch of shutouts, the McCormick and the Rebels played 483 minutes of shutout soccer, setting a new school record.
McCormick twice won SEC Defensive Player of the Week honors, helping the Rebels advance to the SEC Tournament for the 14th time in school history and the quarterfinals of the 2013 SEC Tournament with a shutout win over LSU in the opening round of the annual event.
In 2011, goalkeepers Alley Ronaldi and McCormick recorded a combined seven shutouts as the team finished the year 8-10-1 overall (4-7 SEC). Ronaldi was named SEC Defensive Player of the Week on August 29. Ole Miss opened the year holding its opponents scoreless for the first 455 minutes of the season, marking the longest scoreless streak in program history.
During 2010, Thompson helped Ole Miss to a 7-9-4 overall record and a 3-5-3 record in SEC play. His goalkeepers, Sarah Story and Alley Ronaldi, recorded a combined six shutouts on the year. In addition, Story set program records for saves in a game (17) and in a season (109).
Thompson brings high-level experience in training goalkeepers to the Rebel program. Following a two-year hiatus from college coaching for family reasons, he came back to the SEC, where he was an assistant at Georgia from 2005-08.
While in Athens, he helped lead the Bulldogs to their first NCAA Tournament berth since 2003 and just their second appearance in the SEC Tournament championship game. Georgia went 40-19-4 during his three seasons, and he helped develop goalkeeper Michelle Betos into an SEC All-Freshman pick who would go on to rank among the all-time school and conference leaders in shutouts and saves.
Thompson was an assistant at Florida State for two seasons, where he helped the Seminoles reach back-to-back NCAA Tournaments, including the 2003 College Cup Semifinals. He trained goalkeeper Joy McKenzie to All-ACC and All-Region status, while she broke several school records along the way.
A native of Grimbsy, England, his extensive experience as a goalkeeper coach on the professional and collegiate levels also includes the WUSA's New York Power (2002-03), Adelphi University men (2001-02), the A-League's Long Island Rough Riders (1998-01) and Lock Haven University men and women (1995-98).
He has also been a member of the ODP Region III coaching staff since 2003.
Thompson holds bachelor's and master's degrees from Lock Haven University (Pa.), where he was a three-time all-conference and two-time all-region player in soccer. He is married to the former April Murphy of Tulsa, Okla., and the couple has a son, Michael.
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