Director of Athletics Janet R. Cone announced the hiring of Clifton Bush as UNC Asheville women's soccer head coach on Tuesday, April 2, 2019.
Bush was chosen as the head coach after a national search. He most recently spent the last season as an assistant coach with the UNC Asheville women's soccer program. He has served as the Director of Women's Soccer for the 2019 spring season.
Bush is the fifth women's soccer head coach in program history.
"Having studied management and organizational leadership and young adult development, Clifton brings a unique educational foundation and approach to our women's soccer program," Cone said. "He also has extensive coaching experience at all levels from youth to Olympic Development. Since arriving on campus, he has earned the respect and trust of our present student-athletes as well. His communication style, knowledge of the game and passion to improve each day will be important to our future success. I look forward to introducing Clifton to all of our Bulldogs fans and friends in the near future."
During his lone season as an assistant coach with UNC Asheville in the 2018 campaign, Bush helped lead the Bulldogs to impressive wins over The Citadel, Hampton and Winthrop.
In charge of the goalkeepers, Bush helped guide freshman goalkeeper Courtney O'Malley to the Big South All-Freshman Team after she started in 11 of the 16 games last year. She logged over 1,000 minutes and earned a stout 1.24 goals against average.
In total, Bush helped lead four Bulldogs to postseason awards including O'Malley with Ellie Stone earning Big South second-team and North Carolina Collegiate Sports Information Association (NCCSIA) All-State second-team honors. Justine James was named to the Big South All-Academic Team.
The 2018 UNC Asheville women's soccer team with Bush on staff also earned the Big South Women's Soccer Sportsmanship Award.
Bush is excited for the opportunity to officially take the helm of UNC Asheville women's soccer.
"Creating a high-performance environment with players that embody a growth mindset is so important to me, so I am excited to lead a group at UNC Asheville that are driven by positive values and determination," Bush said. "I have had the pleasure to really get to know Janet R. Cone and (Senior Associate Athletics Director) Terri Brne and the rest of the UNC Asheville community and I want to thank them for their support and confidence. I am excited to get to work and be part of the Bulldog Family."
A native of Tehachapi, Calif., Bush spent four seasons as an assistant coach at CSUB under head coach Gary Curneen before joining the UNC Asheville women's soccer program. He was promoted to Associate Head Coach after the 2016 season.
In charge of the CSUB goalkeepers also, Bush coached Tori Ornela to one of the most prolific careers in CSUB history. Ornela graduated in 2016 with the all-time school record in career saves with 369 and the second-most wins in CSUB history with 18. The keeper also had the seventh-most career saves among all active NCAA Division I keepers at the end of her career.
Bush also helped lead CSUB to its first-ever conference-winning season in the 2016 season with the Roadrunners collecting their most wins overall in their NCAA Division I history during the 2016 campaign. CSUB finished second place in the WAC during the 2016 regular-season and closed out the tremendous season in the semifinals of the WAC Tournament.
In addition to his now head coaching role at UNC Asheville, Bush also has experience in women's professional soccer where he has spent the past two seasons and continues to serve as an Opposition Analyst and Scout. He is also the Founder and Co-Host of the #NWSLRewind, which is a weekly podcast covering the women's professional league. As part of the podcast he conducts analysis and interviews with coaches, staff and players like United States women's national team star Mal Pugh.
Prior to joining the CSUB program, Bush spent time at Dominican University of California where he served as the top assistant during the 2013 season. Bush assisted with all aspects of the NCAA Division II program that received the NSCAA Academic Team Award.
Prior to his time at Dominican, Bush served as head coach at Treasure Valley Community College in Oregon in 2012, where he led the team to its first playoff berth in six years. In 2011, he was an assistant coach at the College of Idaho, where he oversaw both the men and women's keepers.
Bush earned his bachelor's degree in Organizational Leadership and Management from George Fox University.
Before returning to the beautiful game to coach, Bush spent six years as a police detective in Caldwell, Idaho.
Bush holds a USSF 'A-Senior' License.
To learn more about UNC Asheville women's soccer, please visit uncabulldogs.com.
What Others Are Saying About the Hire of Clifton Bush
Tina Ellertson, Former USWNT Player/World Cup Medalist, Portland Thorns FC National Champion, USYNT Staff Coach
"An amazing hire for UNC Asheville. Clifton Bush has a passion for the women's game and building strong team environments that will help UNC Asheville women's soccer players grow on and off the field. He is a coach with a great depth of knowledge and will ensure the student-athletes reach their full potential. Personally, I am excited for Clifton and the program and can't wait to see the success that will come in this new chapter for them both!"
Craig Harrington, Assistant Coach Chicago Red Stars (NWSL)
"Congratulations to Clifton and the university on a great hire! Clifton is knowledgeable about the game and his passion will help the Bulldogs to grow. He's got the experience to know what it takes for this program to be successful and he will create a positive experience which will enrich all of his players on and off the field."
Kat Mertz, Head Coach University of Oregon Women's Soccer
"UNC Asheville has hired an outstanding coach and mentor. Clifton cares deeply about his players and will create a competitive and positive learning environment. His passion and enthusiasm for the game is infectious. I am excited to see where the women's soccer program will go in the upcoming years under Clifton's guidance."
Gary Curneen, Assistant Coach Chicago Red Stars (NWSL), Former Head Coach CSU Bakersfield
"This is a great hire from UNC Asheville. Clifton is not only a student of the game, but also of sports science, psychology, culture and building environments that facilitate growth and success. The players will not only benefit from his high standards, but also his ability to support and connect with every single person. He brings a level of detail on and off the field that will elevate both team and individuals. I'm excited to follow the next step in his coaching journey and see everyone succeed."
UNC Asheville women's soccer head coach Clifton Bush announced the hiring of Davis Fox as the assistant coach of the women's soccer program on Wednesday, July 24, 2019.
"It became clear in the search that Davis is a great young coach who will impact this program tactically and technically. However, the most important thing we discovered is that Davis is a wonderful value fit for our club and community. His desire to foster relationships and help develop the complete student-athlete will help us create the culture UNC Asheville women's soccer will be known for," says Bush. "We are so glad to welcome Davis and his family to the Bulldogs."
Fox arrives in Asheville following a stint with the University of Rhode Island women's soccer program.
As a volunteer coach at URI, Fox aided the Rams in their transition to a new staff and style of play. During his time in Rhode Island, Fox also served as a director for New England Futbol Club's Southeast region, where he was in charge of youth development and the Junior Academy.
"I am extremely grateful to Coach Bush for the opportunity to help create a high-performance soccer environment at UNC Asheville," Fox says. "I am excited to become a part of the town and the team here in Asheville, and I look forward to growing the game within this community."
Prior to his time in Rhode Island, Fox served as the first assistant of a Flagler College women's soccer program which reached a program high No. 5 United Soccer Coaches national ranking. In his first season at Flagler, the team set a program record for number of wins and appeared in its first NCAA tournament, advancing to the second round.
In his tenure at Flagler, Fox coached five Peach Belt all-conference award winners. In addition, Fio Fustagno was selected to the all-region second team and Charlene Nowotny was selected as the Saints' first NCAA All-American, making the first team.
Prior to his time coaching collegiate soccer, Fox served as the assistant strength and conditioning coach at Flagler and coached club soccer in his home state of Indiana with Delaware County FC. In his time at DCFC, he developed players of all ages, sat on the board of directors and held the Assistant Director of Coaching position.
Fox will be joined in Asheville by his wife of three years, Rye. He completed a B.S. in exercise science at Ball State University and earned his Master of Arts in Sport Coaching through the University of Denver.
Fox maintains his USSF D License and his United Soccer Coaches National Diploma as well as being a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist through NSCA.