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GPI -Dean Nichols, Head Men’s Soccer Coach

Courtesy of Dean Nichols

By Raena Doty

Editorial Staff

What is your professional and educational background?

For education, I was at Fitchburg State, graduated from Fitchburg State and played there. And then, soccer background coaching-wise, I started actually as an assistant coach for four years in training in high school, and then I was the head coach at Wellesley High School for four years. And now I’ve been at Framingham for - I think it’s 20 years.

What do you love most about your job?

Just being a part of the group. Just sort of working toward that common goal of trying to help players - help them be successful. Just growing as a group, you know - every year is just that kind of challenge. We don’t have different players every year, but there are always new players added. And so it’s just that challenge of trying to sort of build it and grow throughout the season - and obviously, win games and compete.

What advice do you have for students?

I always try to explain to them that the real reason they’re here is for the education part of it, and that’s first and foremost. This is Division III collegiate athletics. We try to obviously do our best to win and be successful, but 99.9% of these guys are not doing anything soccer-wise after their career is over here at Framingham State. It’s important to get their degree, take their academics seriously because that’s what’s going to set them up for their life going forward, so that’s always the message to the guys.

Why did you choose to coach at FSU?

That whole thing is actually a little bit of a long story. When I was at high school, like I said, at Wellesley High School, I liked - like I mentioned before - being part of a group and trying to help the guys out as best I can, and I wasn’t really looking at anything beyond that at that point, and this job opened up. They actually had a little bit of an issue going on about 20 years ago where they ended up going up to MCLA for their final conference game. It was sort of a big story locally and I saw it. Quite honestly, a bunch of people that I’m sort of close to started saying, “Hey, maybe it’s something you should go for.” I really had no intention at that point. And the more I looked into it - obviously, I lived in Framingham and I went to Framingham South High School years ago and so it’s right down the road, so it was convenient, location-wise. I said, “Yeah, I guess I’ll give it a shot.” But it really wasn’t anything I was targeting, if you will, at that point.

What are your hobbies?

My hobbies really are sports. That’s my main thing. Obviously, I played a lot of soccer growing up - played a lot of random sports as well - hockey, basketball on the side, tennis, things of that nature. Now, I have two kids and a wife … so obviously, the family. But I watch a lot of sports, and that’s really kind of been my life.

What would students be surprised to know about you?

I’m not sure there’s anything … crazy about my life. … I think I live a pretty simple, sort of easy life, if you will. So, I don’t know if there’s anything I could come up with. Like I said in the last answer, I have my family and sports.



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