Commissioner, Indiana Soccer League
NSCAA Academy Staff
Past President, NSCAA (2014)
George Perry has been an active and influential member of the NSCAA for more than 30 years, serving as an Academy Staff coach, in numerous board positions, and as a chair of many NSCAA committees. Most recently, he served as President of the NSCAA (2014).
Perry was named to his current position as commissioner of the Indiana Soccer League in 2012. He has also served as a college coach, state director, state director of coaching, and an intramural director of a college where he developed leagues and league schedules. His career has taken him to almost every state in the Union.
How did you first get involved with the NSCAA?
I was an assistant coach at Indiana University and Jerry Yeagley brought me to my first convention in 1982. Jim Lennox, our first Director of Coaching, invited me to join the NSCAA Academy Staff in 1984.
Tell us about your favorite (or pivotal) NSCAA memory.
Realizing that I would be working with such great soccer individuals as we have on the NSCAA Academy Staff.
What is your favorite NSCAA course to teach and why?
Our Level 1-6 courses, and working with coaches of our youngest players. This is an opportunity to inspire coaches to make a positive, lasting impression on our youth. Besides the “soccer” pieces, it’s an opportunity for a young player to feel good about themselves and their new friends.
What was your favorite NSCAA course to take and why?
For a youth coach, it was our National Diploma, learning more about working with young players. For more advanced players, the Advanced National Diploma, linking technique and tactics, linking groups of players.
What is your favorite part about working as an NSCAA Academy Staff coach?
Finding out that I can always learn something new, from our staff and the candidates.
What does the NSCAA mean to you?
WE! The NSCAA is about collaboration. Every coach, no matter their age group or experience, are valued contributors to our great game.
Why is it important for a coach to advance their education?
The day you believe you know it all is the day you need to take a break. I constantly see the “top” coaches always looking for new ideas to help their players and program improve.
Why is it important for a coach to get involved with the NSCAA?
The countless opportunities to grow, to meet fantastic individuals in our game, and the satisfaction that you have surrounded yourself with individuals (not just our staff but our membership) that will make you better in more ways than you will know.
In your opinion, what are 3-5 key characteristics of a “good coach?”
In no particular order:
- Willingness to learn/open for suggestions
Knowing what you know now, what advice would you give your younger coach self?
I wish I knew the value of where you are vs. the level of where you are. I thought at one time that to be successful, you needed to go to the highest level (i.e. from NCAA Division III to NCAA Division I). I believe we are heading in the direction, but still have a lot of work to value everyone that works in our game, no matter the level. There are some top, high-level coaches that I would not want to see work with U8 players. Those that can work with those players are priceless. Maybe one day our culture will see that.