Caleb Porter (born February 18, 1975) is an American soccer coach who is the head coach of Major League Soccer club Columbus Crew. He was previously head coach of the Portland Timbers from 2013 until 2017, winning MLS Cup in 2015, of the United States U-23 team in 2011–12, and of the University of Akron men's team from 2006 to 2012, winning the NCAA title in 2010.
Porter as Portland Timbers head coach in November 2015
|Date of birth||February 18, 1975|
|Place of birth||Tacoma, Washington, United States|
|Height||5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)|
|Columbus Crew SC (head coach)|
|1998–1999||San Jose Clash||4||(0)|
|1999||→ Sacramento Geckos (loan)||2||(0)|
|1999–2000||Tampa Bay Mutiny||7||(0)|
|2000–2005||Indiana Hoosiers (assistant)|
|2011–2012||United States U23|
|2019–||Columbus Crew SC|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only|
Porter attended Indiana University where he played on the men's soccer team from 1994 to 1997. He graduated in 1997 with a Bachelor's degree in sports management. In February 1998, the San Jose Clash selected Porter with the 3rd round (27th overall) in the 1998 MLS College Draft. He did not join the Clash until 1999 but his tenure there was short - he made just four appearances and, in his one start, was ejected in the 32nd minute. Following that performance, the Clash sent him on loan to the Sacramento Geckos of the A-League before waiving him in June. He quickly returned to MLS after being signed by the Tampa Bay Mutiny in July. He suffered from several knee injuries and had arthroscopic surgery on both knees during the off-season before retiring on June 30, 2000. In 1997, Porter was a member of the U.S. soccer team which took the bronze medal at the 1997 World University Games.
In 2000, Porter returned to Indiana University as an assistant soccer coach. After Ken Lolla left the University of Akron in December 2005, the Zips hired Porter as head soccer coach. After taking the Zips to two consecutive Mid-American Conference titles, and being named the 2007 MAC Coach of the Year, Porter signed a two-year contract extension in June 2008.
Following Akron's near-perfect season of 2009, Porter was rumored to be in talks with Major League Soccer club D.C. United about their vacant head coaching position. However, the University of Akron and Porter agreed on terms of a new contract, keeping him in Akron for the next five years.
Under Porter, the 2010 Akron squad captured the NCAA Men's Division I Soccer Championship, defeating the Louisville Cardinals, 1–0.
National team coach
Porter was named the head coach of the U.S. Under-23 Men's National Team on October 20, 2011, while retaining his duties as coach of the Akron Zips. His first task was attempting to guide the U-23 team to a successful qualifying run in March 2012 for the 2012 Olympic Games in London; however, following a 2–0 loss to Canada and a 3–3 draw with El Salvador, the Americans were eliminated.
On August 29, 2012, it was announced that he would become the head coach of MLS club Portland Timbers after the conclusion of the 2012 NCAA season.
Porter was named the 2013 MLS Coach of the Year after leading Portland to a 14–5–15 (57 pts) record, finishing the regular season in first place in the Western Conference and with the third-best record in the league – two points shy of MLS Supporters' Shield-winners New York Red Bulls. In 2013, the Timbers set new single-season club marks in points, wins, goals (54), goal differential (+21), shutouts (15) and fewest goals allowed (33). Porter was awarded the 2013 Slats Gill Sportsperson of the Year Award from the Oregon Sports Awards.
Helping guide the Timbers to the MLS Western Conference Championship in two of the last three seasons, Porter has compiled one of the league's top winning percentages among active MLS head coaches (41 wins - 25 losses – 36 draws, .578) in 2013-15. The 25 career losses in his first 100 career games as an MLS head coach ranks tied for the fewest losses with San Jose's Dominic Kinnear among all MLS coaches who have reached 100 or more games in the league. Under Porter's guidance, the Timbers made Providence Park one of the toughest places to play in the league, registering a regular-season mark of 24–7–20 at Providence Park over the three seasons 2013–15.
In 2015, the Timbers once again reached the MLS Cup Playoffs, setting a new single-season club record in wins (15), while leading the league with 13 shutouts. Porter led the Timbers to their first MLS Cup final, which they won, 2–1, against Columbus Crew SC. From 2013-15, Porter helped guide the Timbers to the fourth-most points (159) among all MLS clubs, behind only the New York Red Bulls (169), Seattle Sounders FC (167) and LA Galaxy (165).
On January 4, 2019, Columbus Crew SC announced Porter as their new head coach, to replace Gregg Berhalter, who had left to become the head coach of the United States men's national soccer team. Porter's appointment was made simultaneously with the announcement of Tim Bezbatchenko as Crew SC's new president.
- Portland Timbers
Head coaching record
|Akron Zips (Mid-American Conference) (2006–2012)|
|2007||Akron||15–4–2||5–0–1||1st||NCAA 2nd Round|
|2008||Akron||17–2–4||6–0–0||1st||NCAA 3rd Round|
|2011||Akron||15–4–4||6–0–0||1st||NCAA 3rd Round|
|2012||Akron||18–1–3||6–0–0||1st||NCAA 3rd Round|
Postseason invitational champion
- "SJ vs. KC 4/10/99". Sporting Kansas City. April 10, 1999. Archived from the original on June 16, 2013. Retrieved April 16, 2013.
- GECKOS FACE HIGH HOPES, STEEP OBSTACLES The Sacramento Bee - Friday, April 23, 1999
- "Scoring prowess major part of striker's promise". St. Petersburg Times - Wednesday, July 21, 1999
- "June 30, 2000 Transactions". New York Times. June 30, 2000. Retrieved August 29, 2012.
- Goff, Steve (December 10, 2009). "Soccer Insider - Fire Interviews Fraser". Voices.WashingtonPost.com. Retrieved August 29, 2012.
- Beaven, Michael (December 15, 2009). "UA soccer coach to stay with Zips". Akron Beacon Journal. Retrieved December 15, 2009.
- "The Gold Standard: Men's Soccer Captures National Title". GoZips.com. Retrieved October 15, 2017.
- Silverstein, Max (October 20, 2011). "Porter and Ramos announced as new U-23 & U-20 coaches". Usfutblog.com. Retrieved August 29, 2012.
- Amerika, Prost (August 29, 2012). "Caleb Porter is New Timbers Coach". prostamerika.com. Retrieved August 29, 2012.
- "Portland Timbers' Caleb Porter wins 2013 MLS Coach of the Year award". MLSSoccer.com. December 2, 2013. Retrieved October 15, 2017.
- "Landon Donovan leads MLS All-Stars to 2-1 win over Bayern Munich". OregonLive.com. August 2014. Retrieved October 15, 2017.
- "Head Coach - Caleb Porter". Timbers.com. December 19, 2012. Retrieved October 15, 2017.
- "Portland Timbers beat Columbus Crew SC to win first MLS Cup title". ESPNFC.com. Retrieved October 15, 2017.
- "A by the numbers glance at the Portland Timbers path to the Audi 2015 MLS Cup Playoffs". Timbers.com. October 28, 2015. Retrieved October 15, 2017.
- Communications, Timbers (January 27, 2016). "Portland Timbers sign head coach Caleb Porter to long-term contract extension". Timbers.com. Retrieved January 27, 2016.
- "Caleb Porter out as Portland Timbers head coach". OregonLive.com. Retrieved December 13, 2017.
- "Portland Timbers celebrate MLS Cup title with downtown parade". ESPNFC.com. Retrieved October 15, 2017.
- "Portland Timbers become first Cascadia club to reach the MLS Cup: "We want to win the big one"". MLSSoccer.com. November 29, 2015. Retrieved October 15, 2017.