Fri February 18, 2022

By Bren Yocom

Hale Extends Contract

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Coming off three-consecutive Southeastern Conference championships and the program’s first NCAA Tournament Elite Eight appearance, the University of Arkansas has signed head women’s soccer coach Colby Hale to a new employment agreement that could eventually extend Hale’s tenure in Fayetteville through 2026.

“Coach Hale has had a transformational impact on our soccer program,” Vice Chancellor and Director of Athletics Hunter Yurachek said. “Prior to his arrival, our program had not earned a single bid to the NCAA Tournament and had achieved minimal success within the Southeastern Conference. What Coach Hale, his staff and our student-athletes have done in the past few years is simply amazing! Thanks to three-straight SEC titles and deep runs in the NCAA Tournament annually, Coach Hale has helped establish Razorback Soccer as one of the premier programs in the country.”

The new three-year agreement runs from January 1, 2022 to December 31, 2024 and includes a series of scheduled salary increases and up to two one-year agreement extensions based on NCAA Tournament appearances. Additional incentive payments will be based on success in the SEC and the NCAA Tournament and graduation of soccer student-athletes.

"We are very excited to continue the work we have started here at Arkansas,” Coach Colby Hale said. “The success of our program is a reflection of the collective efforts of our student-athletes, assistant coaches, staff members, administrators, Razorback Foundation members and fans. Although we have accomplished a lot over the past few years, we still have goals left to achieve as a program. I want to thank Hunter Yurachek for his continued support of our program. We're all looking forward to the work with our student-athletes to keep improving and striving for greatness."

Colby Hale recently completed his 10th season as head soccer coach at the University of Arkansas after being named to the position on Dec. 21, 2011. Hale has compiled a record of 130-69-19 with the Razorbacks. He has led the Razorbacks to three SEC Championships (2019, 2020, 2021) and has been named SEC Coach of the Year twice (2019, 2020). Arkansas has reached the SEC Tournament final in six-consecutive seasons (2016-21). 

Since taking over the program, Hale and the Razorbacks have reached the NCAA Tournament eight times, the only times the program has ever reached the postseason. He’s also overseen 18 all-region players, 25 all-conference selections, five All-Americans, two Academic All-American, one scholar All-American, and 139 Fall SEC Academic Honor Roll selections.

The Razorbacks repeated in 2021 to win their third-straight SEC regular-season title. Arkansas won a program-record 19 matches and earned a two-seed in the NCAA Tournament where Hale led the Razorbacks to their first Elite Eight appearance, finishing as No. 7 in the final rankings. The squad led the SEC in goals, goals per game, points, assists, assists per game, and shots. Bryana Hunter was named the program’s 13th SEC Scholar-Athlete of the Year, she also garnered Academic All-American honors. Parker Goins was awarded the program’s first SEC Midfielder of the Year, along with a First Team All-American selection. The record-setting team saw six Hogs earn All-SEC honors, and they advanced to their sixth-straight SEC Tournament championship game. For the first time, Razorback Field hosted the first three rounds of the NCAA Tournament and finished No. 5 in the country