Kathryn Balogun Out as UTEP Women’s Soccer Head Coach
Over the last four seasons, the UTEP women's soccer team had been on a steep decline. Today, Director of Athletics Jim Senter decided that he had seen enough. The Miners announced that Kathryn Balogun would not return as head coach.
"Our analysis of UTEP Soccer did not indicate that sufficient progress was being made, and we were not making sufficient progress towards our goal of competing for and winning championships, Senter said in the official school release. "We would like to thank Kathryn for her hard work leading the program, and we wish her well in the future."
For Balogun, her tenure was highlighted by a strong 10-win first season with the Miners. Unfortunately, she was never able to come close to duplicating her success on the pitch. UTEP went 3-6-2 in the pandemic shortened campaign, 4-12 (1-7 C-USA) in 2021, and 4-11-3 (1-7-2 C-USA) this season. She leaves UTEP with an overall record of 21-36-8, including a 9-21-4 mark in Conference USA.
More importantly, the UTEP women's soccer program is at its lowest point in its 25-year history. Balogun had replaced Kevin Cross, whose 212-127-27 record over 18 seasons as head coach of the Miners is the benchmark for success. Many UTEP supporters were upset with the university's decision to change leadership four years ago, especially since Cross had been blindsided by the move. Since leaving UTEP, Cross is now the Girl's Soccer Academy Director at the Rise Youth Academy in Houston.
Senter said that he will conduct a national search to appoint the Miners' next head coach. It will be interesting to see which direction the Miners will go for Balogun's replacement. Senter could look at a head coach who has won at a smaller school or pursue a Power 5 assistant looking for a head coaching job. As with all sports, UTEP could end up losing some of its current roster to the transfer portal. Today, Mina Rodriguez was named to the Conference USA All-Freshman Team while forward Tessa Carlin was named to the 2022 C-USA Women's Soccer All-Academic Team.