Clarksville, Ark.-Dave De Hart has resigned his position as director of athletics at the University of the Ozarks, effective Dec. 31. De Hart will remain as the head men's soccer coach at the university.
De Hart, who has led the athletics program since 2003, is stepping down to focus on his coaching duties. De Hart, in his eighth season as the Eagles’ coach, is among the winningest active men’s soccer coaches in NCAA Division III and he has led Ozarks to a league-record six consecutive American Southwest Conference postseason tournaments.<#IMAGE:1#> “You always hear people say they resign to spend more time with their family and, in a way, that’s what I’m doing. The soccer players are my family and I’m stepping down to spend more time with them as well as my immediate family in California,” said De Hart. “Being director of athletics is a very time-consuming and demanding position and it’s inconceivable to think that that job wouldn’t take away from my coaching duties. Coaching is my passion and this move will allow me to spend more time doing what I really love to do, and that’s coaching soccer.” In eight seasons at Ozarks, De Hart has compiled a record of 96-50-11, including 6-4-1 this season. He has led the Eagles to four ASC championship tournament finals and was named ASC East Division Coach of the Year in 2003 after leading the Eagles to a school-best 18-3-1 record and into the 32-team NCAA Championship Tournament. He was also named conference coach of the year in 2000. His teams have finished either first or second in the ASC in four out of seven seasons. “We’ve had some success here, but I feel like I haven’t expanded the soccer program as much as I could have over the past few years,” De Hart said. “I want to put my energy into expanding the soccer program.” As director of athletics, De Hart hired four of the program’s six other coaches. A total of 118 student-athletes have earned all-conference academic honors since 2003 and U of O teams have won numerous NCAA Team Academic Awards. “We’ve had a good influx of young, energetic coaches in recent years, and with that enthusiasm and energy and with the great support of the University and the administration, the future of the athletics program looks bright,” De Hart said. “It’s a positive group of coaches and I’m looking forward to continuing being a part of this coaching staff.” The university is reviewing its options in filling the director of athletics position.