Skip to main content Menu Menu

Duke Forum for Scholars and Publics

Login   |   Signup

Anson Dorrance

University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill

Anson Dorrance has been the head coach of the North Carolina Tar Heel women’s soccer team since 1979. Following an award-winning playing career with the Tar Heels, Dorrance took over as the head coach of the Tar Heel men’s team in 1977. His men’s teams posted a record of 172-65-21 in his twelve years with the program and won the ACC Championship in 1987. When Carolina decided to make women’s soccer a varsity sport in 1979, Dorrance became a two-team head coach, with the Tar Heel women earning a national championship just three years later. When the NCAA began conducting national championships in women’s soccer in 1982, Carolina won the first three titles. In Dorrance’s 23 years at the helm, the Tar Heel women have won 17 national championships and have amassed a record of 511-23-11 (.948), including a 71-4 record in NCAA post-season play. They have won the ACC Championship 15 times since 1987.

Dorrance was appointed head coach of the United States Women’s National Team in 1986. While he held that position for eight years, the National Team posted a record of 65-22-5 and reached the pinnacle of success by defeating Norway in the final to earn the first FIFA Women’s World Cup Championship in China in 1991. In his final act as National Team coach in 1994, he directed the U.S. to victory at the CONCACAF qualifying tournament for the second FIFA World Cup. In 1996, he received the Walt Chyzowich Award for lifetime coaching achievement.