Dec. 22, 2015– The Bryan College Department of Intercollegiate Athletics has announced the hiring of Paul Babba as the head coach of the women’s soccer program. He is just the third head women’s soccer coach since women’s soccer became an NAIA Sport at Bryan in fall of 1997 under Head Coach Mark Neddo.
The Numan, Nigeria, native Babba comes to Bryan after five years as the head coach at Delta State University in Cleveland, Miss. He brings a wealth of knowledge on the professional, collegiate, and international levels to the women’s soccer program at Bryan.
“I personally want to thank Dr. Livesay and Coach Hasty for giving me their confidence by appointing me the head women’s soccer coach,” said Babba. “I believe there are exciting times ahead for this program. As I went through the interviewing process, it became clear to me that there is tremendous support for the women’s soccer program both within the administration and the Bryan community as a whole. The foundation of this program has been set upon our belief in Christ, and we will integrate that faith with everything we do.”
While at Delta State, Babba implemented a strong defensive and possession position on the pitch, leading the Lady Statesmen to seeing their lowest goals against average in the history of the program. He also emphasized the pursuit of excellence off the field as the Lady Statesmen were a fixture in DSU’s community service competition, The Champs Cup, where they were recognized for their academic commitments.
Prior to his time at Delta State, Babba served for four seasons as the assistant coach to Head Coach Darryl Longabaugh at Mississippi College. He spent the majority of the time focusing on the forwards and midfielders. He helped guide the Lady Choctaws in many successful seasons, producing a great amount of All-ASC performers.
Deeply passionate about teaching soccer to the youth of Mississippi, Babba has served as a club coach with the Mississippi Fire Juniors since June 2010, and he previously held the post of director of coaching at the Brandon Soccer League.
His accomplishments in soccer started during his collegiate playing career, and as a four-year starter at Belhaven College he finished his career as the Blazers’ second all-time leading scorer with 37 total goals. Over a three-year period, he was an offensive threat, compiling 18 assists and 92 points.
His outstanding collegiate career opened the door for Babba to compete at the next level, playing two seasons with Mississippi Brilla FC, a team in the Professional Development League.
While at Belhaven College, he studied sports administration, receiving his bachelor’s degree in 2007. He continued his education, receiving his master’s in intercollegiate athletic administration from Mississippi College in 2010.
He has earned a Class “B” license and a National Youth License from the United States Soccer Federation.
“Coach Babba is a great fit for us and we are excited he has decided to lead our women’s program,” Athletic Director Taylor Hasty remarked. “His love for the Lord and heart for discipleship, as well as his passion for soccer will help our players grow both on and off the field.”
Written by Wesley Sanders ’15, sports information director.