Meet Gordon Henderson
Director of Coaching
Ohio South Youth Soccer Association
Born in Hamilton, Scotland , Gordon apprenticed with East Fife F.C. and was a pool player with the U15 and U16 Scottish schoolboys teams. He attended Heriot Watt University in Edinburgh, where he played for Whitehill Welfare F.C. and the Scottish National Collegiate team for four years. He graduated top of his class with a degree in Physical Education (with commendation). During this time, Gordon also worked with Raith Rovers F.C. as a coach.
"That is where I really got the coaching bug. I was trying out as a player at the time, but it was becoming apparent to me that the dizzying heights as a top professional player were just not on the cards. I would have been a ‘journeyman’ professional player in the first or second division and it just wasn’t a path I wanted to go. The manager of Raith Rovers (Jimmy Nichol) was intrigued by my teaching and physical education background and invited me to join his staff on an advisory role. The next thing I knew I was running the squads’ pre-season physical and physiological development program. I was doing my S.F.A. National coaching badges at the time, so it was a great contextual experience".
Henderson arrived in the United States in 1991 and settled in Rohnert Park, California where he worked as a multiple age group teacher for children with special needs. In addition, Gordon began to coach local youth teams and began the process of attaining his U.S. Soccer National Coaching Licenses. He was awarded his ‘A’ license in 1994, the same year he received his M.A. in Education.
Over the next 15 years, Henderson started programs at North Dakota State University, Idaho State University and reinvigorated the program at the University of Arkansas. His reputation as a successful coach with an ability to develop both programs and players, followed him on every stint. He is still one of the most successful coaches at each of those institutions. Six NCAA appearances and Conference Coach of the Year awards speak to his success. Numerous All Conference awards, as well as Conference Player and Freshman of the Year awards speak to his ability to develop players.
During the same time period, he also became very involved with youth soccer on an educational level, conducting and assisting license courses in Minnesota, North Dakota, Idaho and Arkansas. In addition, he freely gave his time to local area coaches and clubs with coaching and session plans, age appropriate instruction and coaching effectiveness.
Henderson has written soccer articles for magazines and has published two theses; "The History of Football and it’s Role in the Scottish Secondary School System" (1991) and "Metacognition: The Physiology of Learning" (1994).
Throughout his professional career, Henderson has shown an ability to educate people regardless of age, ability level, experience and physical challenges. He has coached at every level; from youth to college to professional. " I have been very fortunate to coach and teach in multiple environments with players of all ages and ability levels. I think that these experiences will be invaluable as I embrace the Director of Coaching role"
Gordon met his wife Lisa in California and married in 1993. They have two children; Cameron and Ailee.