The University of the Cumberlands (UC) takes great pride and tradition in its athletics programs. The men's soccer program is no different. In the last five years, the Patriots have gone a combined 69-25-9 overall with two NAIA Regional appearances and three NAIA Top 25 finishes. The program has built a name for itself and now the reins have been handed off to its newest Head Coach, Brenton Benware.
Benware was the Head Coach at Montreat College for the last three years. While at Montreat, Benware coached his teams to an overall record of 31-21-2. He also coached two NAIA All-American, 11 Appalachian Athletic Conference (AAC) selections, a two-time AAC Player of the Year, and 2 AAC Freshmen of the Year. He also had his Montreat Cavaliers as highly ranked as #11 in the NAIA during his coaching tenure. In 2009, Benware coached the Cavaliers to a victory over the #1 seed Milligan College in the AAC Tournament, but came just short of a NAIA Tournament berth as they lost to Bryan College in overtime 2-1.
When asked about becoming the head coach at the University of the Cumberlands, Benware said, "I'm honored to become part of the rich athletic history at University of the Cumberlands. UC is a great fit for my family and me, and we're excited to be here to assist in the process of transforming lives. I have high hopes of restoring and continuing what Coach Neto has built in the UC soccer program."
Cumberlands Athletic Director Randy Vernon commented, "We are pleased to have Brenton Benware as our new Head Men's Soccer Coach. Coach Benware brings to us seven years of head coaching experience that will prove vital in maintaining our position as a top 25 team in the NAIA. I am very impressed with his commitment to make our men's soccer team one of the best in the Mid-South Conference and the NAIA as well as his commitment to our student-athletes both on the field and in the classroom. His past experiences at both Oklahoma Wesleyan and Montreat make him a perfect fit for the University of the Cumberlands."
Benware played for Oklahoma Wesleyan University during his college years. During that time, he was a 4-year varsity starter, a 3-time MCAC All-Conference Team member, a 2-Time All-Region Team member, and a NCCAA All-American in 2001. He graduated from OWU with a Bachelor's in Business Administration in 2002. Benware then went on to receive his Master's in Christian Leadership from Liberty University in 2010.
Brenton is married to his wife of 6 years, Kelly, and has one daughter, Riley.