OCU's Only Soccer Coach Reflects On 34 Years

Saturday, August 24th 2019, 11:55 pm
By: Lee Benson

Welcome to Brian Harvey Field, named after this man who's been taking care of Oklahoma City University's soccer field for 34 years.

After years of professional playing and coaching experience, the Liverpool-native found himself out of soccer in the mid-80s.

That's when OCU's athletic director pitched Harvey an idea.

"He said, 'Do you know anything about soccer?' I said, well I think I know a little," said Harvey. "So he said, 'Well, we're going to try and start a soccer program here, would you be interested?' and I said yes!"

Men's soccer arrived in 1986. Eight years later, OCU wanted a women's team.

"The then-athletic director asked if I would take (the women's coaching job) on in an interim basis until they could find somebody," said Harvey. "Here I am 25 years later, on the interim basis."

Yes, Harvey coaches both the men and the women.

"I'm a little bit of a dinosaur actually in terms of doing both," said Harvey. "That era is getting fazed out, so that dinosaur is going to go lay down."

When Harvey started at OCU he never dreamed of the field being named after him one day; he just wanted soccer to succeed.

"It was just trying to promote a sport I love," said Harvey. "My father always used to tell me, always leave things better than the way you found them. So hopefully, we've left this in better shape than we found it."

On the same day OCU's field was dedicated to Brian Harvey, coach also had the chance to win his 800th career game. Unfortunately, the men's team lost Saturday. But 800 isn't really on Harvey's mind, he just wants to take in his final season before retirement.

"Hopefully just enjoy it for a change and don't worry so much about the results," said Harvey. "Because what's the worst thing that can happen? I get fired?"