Coach Brian O’Connor Brings Accomplished Leadership to Men’s Soccer


Fulton, Mo. ‒ June 26, 2023: Westminster College is pleased to welcome an accomplished leader to the Blue Jays with the recent hiring of Brian O’Connor as head men’s soccer coach.

O’Connor comes to Westminster from Randolph College in Lynchburg, Virginia, where he most recently served as head coach to the Wildcats, garnering a 6-6-3 record and a 3-5-2 record in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference.

Derek Zander, Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics, Athletics Advancement, and Strategic Programs, says O’Connor is prepared to meet his team and excited for the new soccer season ―  practices begin in August.

Zander adds, “We are excited for Coach O’Connor to join our Department of Athletics and head up our men’s soccer team, which is part of a historic tradition at Westminster.”

Prior to his position at Randolph College, O’Connor was named the head soccer coach to the Prairie Fire of Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois, in 2018. As head soccer coach, O’Connor compiled an overall record of 43-16-3 and a 24-3 mark in the Midwest Conference.

During that time, his teams won two regular season championships, two Midwest Conference Tournament titles, and qualified twice for the NCAA Tournament. His 2018 team set a program record with 16 wins.

O’Connor began working for the Knox College Prairie Fire in 2015 as the assistant coach/recruiting coordinator. In that capacity, he helped lead the program to its fourth straight conference tournament appearance and second straight undefeated season in Midwest Conference play, to name just a few accolades.

As for his new position with Westminster, O’Connor is enthusiastic about joining the Blue Jays soccer program.

“I would like to thank President Lofe and Mr. Zander for this opportunity, and I’m extremely excited to work with the faculty, staff, and student-athletes at Westminster,” he says.

A native of Springfield, Illinois, O’Connor graduated in 2010 from Illinois College, where he double-majored in History and Communications and then was hired at the college as an assistant soccer coach.

O’Connor holds a United Soccer Coaches national diploma and is certified in Strength and Conditioning.

He also served in the U.S. Army from 2011 to 2014 and has an associate’s degree in Intelligence Operations from Cochise College in Douglas, Arizona. He and his wife, Sarah, are the parents of two sons, Declan and Everett.

O’Connor reflects, “I am truly honored to be a member of the Westminster College community and look forward to continuing the rich tradition that is Westminster’s men’s soccer, creating a program that not only produces great student-athletes, but great people.”

ABOUT THE BLUE JAYS AND WESTMINSTER COLLEGE: The Department of Athletics at Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri, boasts 18 varsity sports teams and is a member of the NCAA Division III, the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SLIAC) and Upper Midwest Athletic Conference (UMAC). Founded in 1851 and home of Winston Churchill’s “Iron Curtain” speech, Westminster College is ranked prestigiously by The Princeton Review as one of the “Best 150 colleges in the Midwest” for 2024. In 2023, the independent think tank Third Way singled out the small, private college as one of the nation’s best among colleges and universities in the United States in terms of economic mobility and return on investment. Additionally, U.S. News & World Report places Westminster in a unique category by itself, listing it as the only National Liberal Arts college in Missouri. New Westminster alumni experience a more than 90 percent placement rate in jobs or graduate school within six months of graduation. Westminster has long been recognized for its focus on educating and inspiring students to make an impact on the world around them. Find out more about Westminster by visiting our website. To learn more about America’s National Churchill Museum, go to  

FOR MORE INFORMATION: Contact Sarah Backer at 573-220-9038 or

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Sarah Rummel Backer

Sarah Rummel Backer is the Director of Media Relations and Senior Writer at Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri. A proud Westminster graduate, Sarah has more than 20 years of experience in marketing and strategic communications in the areas of higher education, medicine, agriculture, and the private business sector.