Longtime coach Steve Holeman takes over women’s program


Lamar’s newly hired women’s soccer coach Steve Holeman. UP Elizabeth Grimm

Lamar’s newly hired women’s soccer coach Steve Holeman. UP Elizabeth Grimm

The ball makes contact with a foot and soars across the vibrant, green field. The tension of the game ripples through the crowd in the hopes that their team will conquer the field. The coach strides down the sideline anticipating the team’s next move. This is the career of Lamar’s new head soccer coach, Steve Holeman.

“The soccer complex, I think, is amazing here and the fact that this team has not been in the conference tournament in the last three years, I want to help them achieve that,” he said. “I know they all want to get there. I want to help try and turn things around.”

Holeman’s expectations are high.

“I hope to win the Southland Conference,” he said. “Every coach that comes here will tell you the same thing, right? You’d like to win the regular season, you’d like to win the conference tournament and you want to get to the NCAAs. I’m no different — it’s just a matter of how quickly we can accomplish that.”

Even in his childhood, Holeman’s passion for soccer was notable.

“I started when I was seven and just fell in love with it right away, and have been playing my whole life,” he said. “Actually, when I first started out my dad wasn’t into soccer. After the first couple years, because I was playing soccer, he became very interested and then he became a coach. He was one of the coaches that never actually played soccer but read books and found out as much as he could. He actually coached me throughout my youth career.”

Holeman previously coached at the University of Mississippi for 16 seasons and the University of Georgia for five seasons.

It’d be difficult to imagine himself in another career, Holeman said.

“I’ve been doing it for so long, it’s really all I kind of know,” he said. “If there was a different career, other than coaching, I would still want it to be connected with soccer because it’s my passion.”

In his spare time, Holeman finds pleasure in other physical activities.

“I like to exercise — whether it’s jogging or cycling or just being active — I like working out,” he said. “I used to be really, really into cycling. I’d go on 50-mile bike rides. (I’ve) been in a couple races, things like that. I actually haven’t done a whole lot recently because it’s become a lot more dangerous with people texting and driving. If there’s a safe area to cycle, then that’s different.”

Holeman has spent the majority of his life in the South.

“I was born in North Carolina,” he said. “We moved to Atlanta and then New Jersey, Oklahoma and Kansas, and we’ve moved all around. I went to school at Wake Forest, which is in North Carolina. Then I went to graduate school at Auburn and I’ve kind of been in the south with the exception of my high school years.”

Steve Holeman UP Elizabeth Grimm

Steve Holeman
UP Elizabeth Grimm

Holeman said he is family-oriented and that is part of what attracted him to the job.

“I have family in Houston,” he said. “Actually, my mom just moved to Katy a couple of months ago but my brother, sister, aunt and uncle all live in Katy. And I have cousins in Pearland, so Lamar was attractive.

“My family is probably the biggest thing — playing with my kids,” he said. “I have a six-year-old son named ‘Bo’ and an 11-year-old daughter named Anna Mae. That would be my hobby — playing with them and spending time with them.

“They both play soccer and they’re active. (I like) helping with them and going to their practices and coaching them — helping them become better at whatever it is they do.”

Holeman said that while soccer is his passion, he tries to make his children well-balanced.

“We wanted to have them active in different things — they’ve tried a bunch of different sports,” he said. “My daughter has done some 5k — she’s been in triathlon. My son has played a little baseball and he wants to play basketball coming up. It’s not just soccer. I’m not one to force soccer on them just because that’s what I did.”

Through Lamar, Holeman hopes to continue his success.

“I’m hopeful that I can stay here long term with all my family close by,” he said. “My objective right now is to establish a program. I think, as I can hopefully accomplish what I want to do, which is to win some championships here, that’s going to be more reason for me to stay and continue that.”

Elizabeth Grimm

UP Staff Writer

Learn more about Lamar University at lamar.edu

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