Bruce Deaton (Coach Bruce) is entering his fifth season at Evangel University; he joined EU as director of soccer operations and head women’s coach in April 2015 to lead the launch of the two new soccer programs at Evangel. Both teams began play in the fall of 2015. This past year, the women’s team continued its progress on the field with improvement in all statistical categories including goals scored, goals allowed, overall and conference wins, while compiling a record of 7-10-1.
This past year two players received NAIA Scholar-Athlete awards and an additional player received all-conference recognition, another set of firsts for the program. The team completed the academic year with a team GPA of 3.44, garnering their second straight team academic award from both the NAIA and the United Soccer Coaches. Additionally, the ladies were recognized with the Team Ethics and Sportsmanship Award from the United Soccer Coaches for exhibiting fair play, sporting behavior, and adherence to the laws of the game.
Coach Deaton is involved in the local soccer community as Technical Director for FC Legacy soccer club in Springfield. Additionally, this past summer, he helped coach the Springfield Lady-Demize, a brand-new team in the Women’s Premier Soccer League (WPSL). Prior to coming to Springfield, while Deaton was in central Louisiana, he served as director of coaching and player development for the Crossroads Soccer Association. He also spent ten years as an Olympic Development Program (ODP) head coach for the Louisiana Soccer Association, as well as, being a coaching instructor.
While in Louisiana, coach Deaton was at Louisiana College (NCAA D-III) where he was the head women’s soccer coach for five seasons, in addition to being the associate athletic director. Prior to taking over at Louisiana College, Deaton had a successful stint as a high school coach at Ouachita Christian School in Monroe, Louisiana. During his eight seasons as both boys and girls coach at OCS, Deaton was twice named the state high school girls coach of the year for Louisiana (2009 and 2010).
Coach Deaton holds a USSF (United States Soccer Federation) National “B” License and National Youth License as well as the United Soccer Coaches Premier Diploma and Level III Goalkeeping Diploma.
Deaton played collegiate soccer at Marshall University (NCAA D-I) in Huntington, West Virginia, where he earned both his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Business Administration. Deaton and his wife, Margaret (who also works at Evangel University) have been married for 33 years and have two grown children, Tessa (who serves as a voluntary assistant coach for the women’s team) and Tucker.