The Chicago Fire announced today that Craig Reynolds has accepted an assistant coaching position with the club. Reynolds joins longtime coaches Denis Hamlett and Daryl Shore on Head Coach Dave Sarachan's assistant coaching staff. Reynolds takes over the coaching spot that was vacated by Tom Soehn, who departed the Fire in January to take a similar position with D.C. United.
"I feel very fortunate to be joining the coaching staff of the Chicago Fire," said Reynolds. "From top to bottom the Fire is a great organization with a vision towards the future of professional soccer in this country. I've known Dave for many, many years and I'm pleased we've been reunited as coaches, especially with a team of this caliber. I'm going to help this club continue to be successful any way I can."
Reynolds joins the Fire coaching staff after having served the last eight seasons (1996-2003) as the top assistant coach at the University of Virginia for Cavaliers Head Coach George Gelnovatch. Reynolds' move to Chicago reunites him with Sarachan, as the two served as assistant coaches from 1986-1988 for then Virginia Head Coach Bruce Arena.
"I'm very excited to bring Craig on board," said Fire Head Coach Dave Sarachan. "I've known Craig for over 20 years. We've coached together and he's a great friend of mine. He's a true professional and I'm confident that he'll be able to bring a lot of experience to our young team. I'm very much looking forward to working with him this season and beyond."
Prior to his second coaching stint with the Cavaliers, Reynolds served as the Head Coach at Christopher Newport University in Newport News, VA. During his eight-year tenure there (1988-1995), Reynolds' teams compiled a 69-66-13 record. He led the Captains to two of their three top single-season records and to several top-four regional rankings. His 69 career victories are the most wins ever by a coach at the Division III school.
From 1996 to 2003, Reynolds also served as the Olympic Development Program's Region I Head Coach for the Under-17 age group and was instrumental in helping develop players such as Kyle Martino and Edson Buddle of the Columbus Crew and MLS 2003 SuperDraft top overall selection Alecko Eskandarian of D.C. United.
Reynolds received his bachelor's degree in Physical Education in 1975 from SUNY-Brockport, where he earned All-America soccer honors as a senior in 1974 after leading his team to the school's first-ever Division III national championship. Following his collegiate career, Reynolds returned to his hometown to play professional soccer in the North American Soccer League (NASL) from 1976-1981 with the Rochester Lancers. He also played with several teams in the Major Indoor Soccer League (MISL), including the New York Arrows (1979 Champions), and Chicago Horizon.