Plymouth native Neidig takes over as Bluefield women’s soccer coach
Bluefield, Va. — Plymouth native Chase Neidig will take over as head women’s soccer coach at Bluefield College in Bluefield, Virginia, the college announced Thursday.
Neidig is a 2003 Grace Baptist High School graduate who owns the school’s all-time goals record with 93 and helped lead Grace to two Indiana Association of Christian Schools Division I state championships. He is a 2009 Grace College graduate with a double major in communications and journalism.
Neidig makes the move from assistant men’s soccer coach at Bluefield to lead the women’s soccer program as the college switches from the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Division II Appalachian Athletic Conference to the NAIA DI Mid-South Conference in the fall of 2012. Along with his duties as assistant men’s soccer coach under head coach Peter Dryer Neidig last season, he has also spent the past 15 months as Bluefield’s Sports Information Director.
Neidig worked five years in a variety of roles before his arrival in Bluefield, including two coaching positions at the high school level in both Indiana and Ohio. During those coaching stints, he collected a total of nine wins and 23 losses. Both programs where he helped doubled their total number of wins in just a one-year span.
While he was coaching at the high school level, his full-time position was in the development of two professional soccer organizations in the Cleveland City Stars (former USL-2) and the recent popular Dayton Dutch Lions (USL-PRO).
He was in fact the very first employee at DDL and was instrumental in the cultivation of the entire organization from its Academy, professional team, Super 20s and W-League, all of which play under the umbrella of the United Soccer Leagues (USL).
Early in life, Neidig spent several years in The Gambia, West Africa, where he is convinced his passion for soccer began.
“I was in club youth soccer growing up, but I believe my experience as a child in a third-world country — always being around the game of soccer is why I will always be in the game somehow,” he said.
His tours around the world didn’t stop in Africa, as Neidig would go on to play after college in the Czech Republic as part of an exchange agreement when touring with the USL-PRO side Charlotte Eagles. He would spend the rest of the season with Pisek FC, a third-division side just outside Prague before ending his short professional career due to a tough knee injury.
Neidig loves his opportunity at the NAIA level to make a difference with his student-athletes.
“I love the opportunity for interaction, community and real relationships, proclaimed Neidig. “I can really invest the time with potential recruits while on the road that I couldn’t at the NCAA level.”
There’s a reason why he enjoys this.
Bluefield’s new women’s head coach played his collegiate ball at a similar NAIA institution like BC at Grace College in Winona Lake. His experience with that program and head coach Matt Hotchkin was a reason he is still in the game today.
“I owe a lot to Coach Hotchkin,” said Neidig. “He gave me a ton of great advice as I made the switch to the college level in regards to coaching, managing and my personal life. He has been a great role model for me, hence why we are so close to this day.”
Neidig not only holds experience at the playing and coaching level but also as a business owner in the soccer industry.
As owner of Tourbeau Sports Group — a player and event management company specializing in marketing and media production for players and sporting organizations — he has been able to use his connections from TSG to broaden Bluefield’s name across the country in the game of soccer.
“I believe Tourbeau Sports has been an added bonus for recruitment on the men’s program at Bluefield so far due to my involvement with so many national soccer events and connections I have at the professional,” said Neidig. “I plan to use the same strategy for the women’s program as well.”
His role as women’s soccer head coach is well under way as he is preparing his team for a highly competitive 2012 season. The season includes a trip to Georgia versus two NAIA programs and its first season in the MSC. The Lady Rams will travel to No. 3 Lindsey Wilson College, in September.
He will also stay on as the men’s soccer top assistant for the program, while his duties as Sports Information Director will no longer exist.