Duke Cochran finished his 13th season as the head coach of the Truman’s men’s soccer squad in the fall of 2017 after being named the program’s eighth head coach in 2005. He has compiled a 111-99-21 (.526) record through 13 seasons, including five seasons of double-digit victories.
Cochran moved into first place all-time at Truman in career coaching victories in 2015 and has led the Bulldogs to the NCAA tournament twice in 2005 and 2010. He also guided the team to the MIAA tournament in 2012, as the program competed under a conference banner for the first time since 1998 that season.
2015 also marked the first season in Truman’s three-year GLVC tenure in which a player earned a postseason conference honor. That honor was awarded to Trevor Kaufmann when he was named third-team all-conference after leading the team in goals with six, which was good for 10th in the league. His five game-winning goals were tied for first in the GLVC and he did all of this as just a true freshman.
In 2010, the Bulldogs held a top-25 ranking throughout much of the season before falling 3-2 at No. 2 Midwestern (Texas) State in the NCAA tournament first round. The Bulldogs posted a 12-match unbeaten streak from Sept. 24 through Nov. 7 to earn one of the South Central region’s two allotted bids to the NCAA tournament.
Cochran opened his coaching pedigree at Truman with a 17-3-2 season in 2005 that resulted in a trip to the NCAA Division II national tournament. The Bulldogs reached the regional finals before being eliminated by penalty kicks by now-Div. I Southern Illinois-Edwardsville.
Cochran has coached 13 players that have received NSCAA all-region recognition, including four in both 2005 and 2010. Martin Clayes earned first-team all-American recognition under Cochran’s guidance in 2005, while the coach has also put nine players on the CoSIDA Academic all-Region team, including Jared Atwood, who, in 2005, was named an Academic all-American. In addition, Bobby Larkin was named a Daktronics all-American after leading all three NCAA divisions in assists in 2010 prior to Charlie Backus leading NCAA Div. II with 0.82 assists per game en route to first-team NSCAA regional honors in 2012.
Cochran has earned his USSF “A” license, NSCAA Advanced National as well as USSF National Youth. From 2002 until taking the head position at Truman, Cochran served as the Director of Coaching/Player Development for Valley AFC, an instructional youth soccer program in Roanoke, Va. He also worked as an Olympic Development (ODP) coach in Virginia and was on the Virginia Youth Soccer Association Coaching Education staff. Prior to working at Valley AFC, he was the Director of Coaching/Player Development from 2000-2002 for the Springfield (Va.) Youth Club and from 1997-99 for Ankeny (Iowa) Soccer Club.
He garnered collegiate coaching experience prior to taking the head job at Truman as well, working as an assistant coach at Central College (Iowa) in 1997 and an assistant coach at Truman from 1995-97. While at Truman, he helped the Bulldogs win conference titles in 1995 and 1996 and advance to the NCAA Tournament in 1995.
Cochran’s playing experience included all-MIAA second-team accolades during a four-year career as a Bulldog from 1991-1994. As part of the midfield, he helped Truman win the MIAA title and won the team’s Bulldog award that season, given to the player who shows commitment to excellence on and off the field. Truman’s best season while Cochran was playing came in 1993 when it went 13-4-1 and advanced to the NCAA Tournament.
For his career, he played in 51 games, including 36 starts, and recorded two goals and eight assists. Cochran also played for the Des Moines Menace in the United Soccer Leagues for three seasons. He led the Central region in assists in 1996 and helped the team win the South Central Conference championship in 1997. Cochran graduated from Truman in 1995 with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology.
He and his wife, Stephanie, have two daughters, Ella and Sydney, and reside in Kirksville.