Created: Wednesday, January 25, 2012 5:30 a.m. CST

Ross named new NIU women's soccer coach


Northern Illinois named North Dakota State associate head coach/goalkeepers coach John Ross as its newest women’s soccer coach, NIU announced Tuesday. Ross replaces Carrie Barker, who was let go at the end of her fourth season.

Ross, an Elmhurst native, has spent the past nine seasons at North Dakota State.

“John emerged as a great candidate because of his ties to the Chicagoland area and he’s been a part of a winning program at North Dakota State University,” NIU athletic director Jeff Compher said in a news release. “They’ve built that program and they’ve been successful in their conference. He’s recruited the Midwest and he knows it very well and we believe that he’s going to put together a great program. We’re excited to have him and we look forward to having him in our coaching family.”

In the same news release, Ross expressed his excitement about coming to NIU.

“I want to start by thanking Jeff, Christian [Spears] and other members of the hiring committee for giving me the opportunity to join the Northern Illinois athletics family,” Ross said. “Jeff has created such an exciting environment at NIU and there was no question that I wanted to be a part of it.”

“I want to thank the players, staff and community at North Dakota State for allowing me to be a part of NDSU for the past nine seasons. I look forward to getting started and building some excitement around the Huskies women’s soccer program.”

Ross began at NDSU in 2003 as the goalkeepers coach, serving in that capacity for four seasons and helping the program transition from NCAA Division II to Division I. In 2007 he was elevated to associate head coach. North Dakota State was 37-17-10 over the past three seasons.

Ross started his coaching career at Triton College as the head coach of the men’s program. In his two seasons with the Trojans, Ross led the team to a 28-7-2 record and the NJCAA Regional Final in 2001.

Will NIU football win the MAC this season?