MEET THE COACHING STAFF
• NCAA Championship Appearances – 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017
• Atlantic Sun Championship Appearances – 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017
• Atlantic Sun Regular Season Champions – 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017
• Atlantic Sun Tournament Champions – 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017
• Atlantic Sun Coach of the Year – 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
• Coached A-SUN Player of the Year - 2010, 2014, 2015, 2016
• Coached A-SUN Defensive Player of the Year – 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015
• Coached A-SUN Goalkeeper of the Year – 2013, 2017
• Coached A-SUN Freshman of the Year – 2007, 2009, 2013
• Coached ASUN Scholar-Athlete of the Year - 2011, 2018
• 18 NSCAA All-South Region selections
• 39 A-Sun All-Conference first team players
• 19 A-Sun All-Conference second team players
• 23 A-Sun All-Freshmen selections
• 15 All-Academic Team selections
A veteran of nearly three decades in collegiate coaching, head coach Jim Blankenship, who was named the 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 ASUN Coach of the Year, has built FGCU women's soccer into a yearly contender in the Atlantic Sun Conference and a rising program in the Southest Region in just 11 seasons.
Blankenship ranks among the elite Women’s Soccer coaches in collegiate history, entering 2018 with the 10th highest winning percentage of any Division I coach all-time at .743 while ranking 13th in all-time wins with 383. Among active coaches, Blankenship’s resume is even more impressive, ranking 5th in winning percentage behind only Anson Dorrance (North Carolina), Mark Krikorian (Florida St.), Jennifer Rockwood (BYU), and G Guerrieri (Texas A&M).
Blankenship started the program in 2007 and has since guided the Eagles to 11 straight double-digit win seasons, culminating with ASUN Regular Season Championships in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017. In 2011 and 2012 he also lead the Eagles to back-to-back ASUN Tournament championships and became the first team in the history of the university to make it to the NCAA Tournament. He then repeated that feat in 2014 and 2015, culminating in the program's first NCAA Tournament victory in 2015, defeating USF 2-1 in the First Round. FGCU has since made it to four consecutive trips to the NCAA Tournament and six in seven years with its latest trip in 2017.
Blankenship has guided FGCU to a 143-51-21 overall record over the first 11 seasons of the program's existence, including a 71-11-12 mark in the ASUN. Since joining the ASUN in 2007, the Eagles lead the league in conference wins (71) and fewest conference losses (11). In their last seven seasons in the ASUN, FGCU sports a 53-3-8 record. FGCU's 8-0-2 ASUN record in 2010 and 7-0-2 record in 2013 were the 11th and 12th unblemished seasons in conference history and two of seven since the league left divisional play in 1999. The Eagles' 7-0 mark in 2014 was the first undefeated and untied regular season since 2000.
While building four different programs from scratch, Blankenship's teams have won three National Championships, appeared in eight Final Fours, received seven NCAA Division I National Tournament bids and graduated more than 41 All-Americans and 25 Academic All-Americans. Blankenship's impressive career record of 383-122-32 over 25 seasons has come while leading FGCU, University of Miami, Lynn University and St. Thomas University.
The Eagles overcame adversity in 2017 to remain atop the ASUN Conference. Following a 7-1 start to the season, FGCU was forced to remain in Arizona due to Hurricane Irma, returning with a 7-2 record nearly a week later. Upon returning, FGCU went into conference play and moved their unbeaten streak against conference foes to 49 games, the fourth-longest streak in NCAA history, before falling to Lipscomb 1-0. With a Bisons loss on the final day of the season, FGCU shared the crown, continuing its stretch of consecutive regular season titles to eight, the longest active streak in the country. Going on the road for the conference tournament for the first time in program history, FGCU defeated Jacksonville in the semifinals before coming from 2-0 back to take down Lipscomb in the Final, 3-2 in double overtime. With the win, FGCU made it four-straight NCAA appearances and six in seven seasons.
FGCU's historic 2017 season came full circle when the Green and Blue earned 11 All-Conference selections, the most in ASUN history and the maximum a program can earn. Among those 11 were six First Team selections including the ASUN Goalkeeper of the Year (Melissa Weck) and the ASUN Defensive Player of the Year (Ashley Parks). Later, FGCU would again earn the maximum number of honors when five players were selected to the All-Southeast Region Teams. Only FGCU, South Carolina, and UCF placed five honorees on the All-Southeast Region Teams.
FGCU's dominance in conference play continued in 2016 as the Eagles once again hoisted the ASUN regular season trophy with a 6-0-1 mark. The success continued, as FGCU defeated Lipscomb in the ASUN Tournament to make its fifth trip to the NCAA Tournament in just six seasons. The Eagles placed seven athletes on All-Conference teams, including ASUN Player of the Year Tabby Tindell, who became the first women's soccer player to win three-consecutive Player of the Year honors. Tindell again made history, becoming FGCU's first NSCAA All-American when she earned Third Team honors following her senior season. The season also witnessed Tindell break the ASUN goals (66) and points (162) record as well as FGCU's assist (30) mark.
The Eagles made it six-straight ASUN titles in 2015 led by ASUN Player of the Year Tabby Tindell and ASUN Defensive Player of the Year Emma Blackwell. With a 14-6-3 mark overall, FGCU completed one of its most successful seasons all while making history at the end of the season. Playing USF in the First Round of the NCAA Tournament, the Eagles defeated the Bulls 2-1 for the program's first NCAA win.
2014 repeated the success from the previous season and more. The Eagles set new single-season program records in points (141), points per game (6.71), goals (45), game-winning goals (17), assists (51), assists per game (2.43) all while winning a program-best 17 matches. FGCU's historic run in 2014 resulted the Green and Blue hosting Auburn in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament in addition to their fifth straight ASUN title.
In his seventh year on the sidelines of the FGCU Soccer Complex, Blankenship guided the Green and Blue to a fourth consecutive ASUN regular season title and had a record eight selections to ASUN postseason teams including Freshman of the Year Tabby Tindell and Goalkeeper of the Year Brittany Brown. The numbers would suggest that 2013 was the greatest season offensively in FGCU women's soccer history. The Eagles set program single-season records in points (130), goals (43), shots (384), shots per game (19.20), shots on goal (180) and shots on goal per game (9.00).
In his sixth season, Blankenship led FGCU to its third-straight regular season title and second-straight tournament crown. The team tied the program record for wins (14) and had a program-best 14-4-3 record and an impressive 7-1-1 record in the ASUN. FGCU won the ASUN Championship in the same fashion as last year, with a freshman scoring the game-winning goal in overtime for a 2-1 victory over Mercer.
FGCU ended the 2011 campaign with a 14-5-2 overall record and an impressive 7-1-1 ASUN mark, claiming back-to-back ASUN regular season titlesand earning their first-ever ASUN tournament championship. FGCU won the championship off a dramatic goal in double-overtime sending the Eagles into the NCAA Championship for the first time in program history.
In his fourth year at the helm, Blankenship led FGCU to its first ASUN regular season championship after finishing the season with an unblemished 8-0-2 conference record, while posting an 11-4-2 overall mark. The Eagles had a conference-best 11 shutouts under Blankenship's watch and received votes in the NSCAA South Region Poll. As the central part of a defense that only allowed two goals in ASUN games, KC Correllus earned Player of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year. It was the first time the same player has won both honors since it's the defensive award's inception in 2007. Goalkeeper Stephanie Powers and midfielder Olivia Elias joined Correllus on the All-Conference first team, while defender Kat Hunter and forward Lindsay Haw made the second team. Newcomer Jenci Villaverde made an immediate mark on the program, earning a spot on the All-Freshmen team. Correllus and Elias also earned spots on the All-South Region first and third teams, respectively.
Blankenship and the Blue and Green matched their inaugural win total after posting a conference best 11 overall wins (11-5-3) in 2009. FGCU again finished in third place in the conference, going 6-2-2 in the ASUN. Under Blankenship's direction, the Eagles posted the conference's lowest goals against average at 0.74 and were second-best in shutouts (7). For their performances in the backfield, Correllus earned first team honors while newcomer Danielle Faller was named Freshman of the Year. The Eagles' keeper, Powers, earned All-Conference second team honors after allowing a conference-low 14 goals. Senior midfielder Amber McCall was also recognized for her offensive tactics as she earned Atlantic Sun All-Conference first team honors for the third consecutive year.
In 2008, Blankenship led the Eagles to 10-4-3 overall record and a 5-2-3 record in the ASUN. FGCU finished fourth in the ASUN, ending the season second in goals per game, assists, assists per game, goals allowed and shutouts. McCall was voted to the Atlantic Sun All-Conference first team, while Haw and redshirt freshman Correllus earned All-Conference second team honors. Correllus also earned a spot on the All-Freshmen team along with Powers.
The Eagles' inaugural season saw a third-place finish in the ASUN with a 7-4 conference mark. FGCU was second in points and goals during 2007 and allowed the second fewest goals per game in the ASUN. Blankenship guided the new program to an overall record of 11-7 and saw Haw named the Atlantic Sun Freshman of the Year with a team-leading 28 points. McCall earned first team honors while, Hunter earned a second team nod. Both Haw and Hunter were voted onto the All-Freshmen team.
Prior to FGCU, Blankenship worked three seasons as the assistant women's soccer coach at FAU, which won back-to-back Atlantic Sun Conference championships. After posting the most wins in program history during the fall of 2006, the Owls received their first-ever bid to the NCAA College Cup, but fell to eventual national semifinalist Florida State in the first round. Under the direction of head coach Brian Dooley, Blankenship was responsible for training and recruiting for the Owls' program.
From 1998 to 2002, Blankenship led the Miami Hurricanes as the program's first coach. He led the team to the conference tournament in the second year of the program and received an NCAA tournament bid in just the fourth season of competition. Under his direction, the Hurricanes climbed as high as No. 14 in the national rankings and Blankenship's recruiting classes were recognized as some of the top-rated collegiate classes between 1998 and 2001.
Before coaching the Hurricanes, Blankenship spent 12 years as the first-ever head women's soccer coach at Lynn. He earned NAIA Coach of the Year honors five times (1988, 1990, 1992, 1994 & 1995) and NSCAA Coach of the Year twice (1992 and 1994). His teams won three national championships (1992, 1994 & 1995) and were runners-up twice (1991 and 1993). The Fighting Knights reached the Final Four in 10 consecutive seasons under his tutelage. He was inducted into Lynn University's Athletic Hall of Fame in the spring of 2003.
In addition to his collegiate coaching, he has been the Director of Coaching for the Soccer Association of Boca Raton, where he coached 15 teams and led Team Boca, one of the most competitive development programs in the nation, to eight championships, including a state title in the U-13 division.
Blankenship played collegiate soccer at FIU and graduated with a bachelor's degree in administration and recreation in 1982. He later went on to earn his master's degree in sports administration from St. Thomas University.
Blankenship, along with his wife Patricia, daughter Jordan, and son Justin live in Estero.