Dec. 16, 2013
VILLANOVA, Pa. - Villanova University Director of Athletics Vince Nicastro today announced the hiring of Fran Kulas as the new head coach of the Wildcat women's soccer program. Kulas replaces John Byford who resigned in November after six seasons on the Main Line. No stranger to Villanova, Kulas served as the associate head women's soccer coach for the Wildcats in 2012-13 after being elevated from assistant coach following the 2010-11 seasons.
"We are thrilled to promote Fran to head coach of our women's soccer program, " said Nicastro. "Fran has been an integral part of our team and has developed the leadership skills needed to guide our student- athletes to new heights. His energy, enthusiasm for the game, and commitment to the Villanova mission will be the foundation for his team's success moving forward."
"I would like to thank Athletic Director Vince Nicastro, Senior Women's Administrator Lynn Tighe, and the entire search committee for this tremendous opportunity," said Kulas. "Villanova truly is a special place and my family and I have always felt privileged to be a part of this community. It is a great honor to lead this program into the future as we strive to return our program to the top of the Big East Conference. I am excited to embark on this journey with the fantastic student-athletes in our program, as we all feel a great sense of responsibility and pride toward representing Villanova University."
At Villanova, Kulas helped the Wildcats qualify for the conference championship for the second consecutive season in 2013. A total of 11 student-athletes have received All-BIG EAST honors during his tenure as an assistant coach, while 50 have been named BIG EAST Academic All-Stars since the 2010 season.
Kulas brings an extensive background and proven record of success to the position, having served on the local, national and international coaching scenes. From 2007-11, Kulas served as an assistant coach for the U14 and U15 U.S. Women's National Teams and is currently the U13 Girls Head Coach for the Region 1 Olympic Development Program.. He currently holds the United States Soccer Federation National `A' and `Youth' coaching licenses and is a member of the federation's national instructional staff for the `A', `B', and `C' coaching license courses.
He has also spent time in Germany as a clinician for ODP Europe and during the winter of 2010 served as the assistant coach for the U19 Region I ODP team that traveled to Russia to compete in the FIFA International U19 Kuban Tournament where the team advanced to the quarterfinals.
A native of the state of Delaware, Kulas joined the coaching staff at Division II Goldey Beacom College prior to the 2008 season. He spent that year as the assistant coach of both the men's and women's teams and was then elevated to associate head coach of the men's squad prior to the 2009 campaign. In that position, he helped lead the Lightning to its most wins and first appearance in the CACC Tournament in six seasons.
Kulas has also had head coaching stops at A.I. DuPont High School (1999), where he led his team to the Delaware High School state championship and No. 4 NSCAA national ranking, and Wittenberg University (Division III), where the team was consistently ranked in the NSCAA Great Lakes Region top-10. In his second season as the head coach of the Tigers, Kulas led the squad to the NCAC Tournament for the first time.