Monday, December 20, 2021
A longtime fixture in the Spokane coaching community, former club coach Bryan Olson recently announced he is stepping down from his position as head coach of the Whitworth women’s program to pursue missionary opportunities in Nepal.
A coach with the club since his graduation from Whitworth in 2009 under longtime former club director Sean Bushey, Olson quickly rose in the coaching ranks in the club and beyond, helping develop some of the top female players to come out of the club over the past 10 years.
He served with the Spokane Shadow from 2010 until his appointment as the women’s head coach at Whitworth in 2016, making a large impact over just a six-year span and continuing to do so with several club players as they played for the Pirates.
“There was certainly a part of me that did not think this day of stepping away from Whitworth would ever come,” Olson in the announcement from Whitworth athletics. “I have been shaped mightily during my time here and I have nothing but love for the people, both present and past, who have made this place so special. Thank you to everyone who has been a part of my journey at Whitworth!”
The Missoula, Montana native has been a figure in the Spokane soccer community since 2006, moving here to play for the Pirates and then serving as an assistant whilst also coaching for the Shadow.
He was a four-year starter on defense and earned First Team All-Northwest Conference and Second Team All-Region recognition as a senior. Following graduation, Olson was the top assistant coach for the Whitworth men’s soccer team for six seasons. His title was elevated to Associate Head Coach ahead of the 2015 season. Over that time the Pirate men’s team posted a record of 66-17-12 and made the NCAA Division III Tournament three times (2012, 2014 and 2015).
Olson served six seasons leading the women’s soccer program. His record was 55-43-11 and he guided the Pirates to third place finishes in 2017 and 2018.
Olson will complete his duties at Whitworth through the end of January before pursuing life this spring in Nepal, which is a developing yet still impoverished nation with more than 50% unemployment. Located in the Himalayas – north of India – it is a return to the mountains for the Montana native. Full Whitworth Announcement [+]