Adrian Bush is in his 15th season at the helm of the University of Tampa men’s soccer team after starring for the Spartans as a player from 1990-94. Bush was named the program’s fifth head coach prior to the 2005 season following the untimely death of his mentor, Tom Fitzgerald.
Bush became the head coach after serving a total of eight years with Tampa as a player and assistant coach. Over the past 13 seasons with the Spartans, Bush has produced a 136-81-22 (.612) record with NCAA tournament appearances in seven of the previous 11 seasons.
In 2018, Bush passed his mentor Tom Fitzgerald as the program's all-time winningest head coach. The milestone victory came on October 10 in a 3-2 double-overtime victory over Sunshine State Conference opponent Embry-Riddle.
He guided the Spartans to a nine-win campaign in 2017, capturing the program's third Sunshine State Conference Tournament Championship with a 2-1 victory over Rollins College in the title match. He also coached the SSC Offensive Player of the Year, Felipe DeSousa, and had his squad ranked as high as No. 8 in the nation.
Named the NSCAA South Region Coach of the Year in 2016, the season resulted in an NCAA South Region championship as Tampa notched tournament victories over nationally-ranked Lynn and Palm Beach Atlantic. The Spartans would advance to the NCAA Quarterfinals, where they fell by a slim 1-0 margin to No. 1 Wingate on the road. UT also advanced to the championship game of the SSC tournament. Finishing the season with 13 wins, UT had a number of players with postseason accolades, including SSC Freshman of the Year Lewis Sugden.
In the 2015 season, Bush guided the Spartans to a 9-7 overall record and 5-3 in conference play. Despite being picked to finish fifth in the conference, UT ended the year second behind only Saint Leo and tied with Rollins. Tampa was undefeated at home but fell short of extending their postseason as they dropped their matchup against Rollins in the SSC Tournament semifinal by a 3-2 score.
Bush guided UT to a 2012 campaign where he guided the Spartans to an overall record of 10-6-1 and a bid to the NCAA Tournament. Bush also earned SSC Coach of the Year honors, marking the second of his career. A pair of Spartans, Dominic Cutrofello and Brian Fekete, signed professional contracts. Fekete was drafted in the 2012 MLS Supplemental Draft by Sporting Kansas City.
In 2010, Bush led a young Spartan team to a 14-7-1 overall record and the program's fourth straight NCAA Tournament bid. He led the team to the SSC tournament championship after losing eight starters from the 2009 squad. The SSC tourney title marked the team's second in a four-year span as the number of All-Americans in the previous three years totaled 10.
Bush guided the Spartans to a 17-3-1 overall record in 2009 while earning a share of the Sunshine State Conference regular-season championship. With four All-Americans, he also coached goalkeeper Ryan Thompson to his second straight SSC Defensive Player of the Year award. He also had a pair of players (Ryan Griffin, Karl Swan) garner academic all-district honors. His team also excelled academically with 14 players earning SSC Commissioner's Honor Roll distinction.
In 2008, the Spartans were 18-4-1 as Bush guided his squad to the NCAA national semifinals where they lost in overtime to eventual national champion Cal State-Dominguez Hills. While being named the Sunshine State Conference and NSCAA South Region Coach of the Year, Bush coached four All-Americans as goalkeeper Ryan Thompson was named the SSC Defensive Player of the Year.
In 2007, Bush led the Spartans to the program's first NCAA tournament since the national championship run of 2001. With a 13-5-1 record, the team registered three victories over national top-10 teams and lost in the NCAA Regional Final in penalty kicks.
The Spartans returned to the NCAA Tournament in 2008 and advanced to the NCAA Final Four, falling 3-2 in overtime to eventual national champion Cal State Dominguez Hills. The Spartans finished 2008 ranked No. 3 in the final NSCAA/Adidas poll, marking the second straight season the Spartans have finished the season ranked in the top 15.
The 2008 season saw many postseason honors, including four players named to the Daktronics All-America team, one named NSCAA All-America, one NSCAA Scholar All-American, the SSC Defensive Player of the Year, four SSC first-team players and four named All-South Region. Bush was also named SSC Coach of the Year and South Region Coach of the Year. It was also a year that marked the fourth player in four years to get drafted in a professional draft as senior Ryan Maxwell was selected in the first round of the 2009 MLS SuperDraft.
Among the former players Bush has coached at UT who are active in professional soccer include Brian Fekete (Orlando City, USL), Dominic Cutrofello (VSI Tampa Bay, USL), Pascal Millien (Sligo FC, Premier Division I - Ireland Champions League 2013-14) and Ryan Thompson (Jamaican National Team). Millien was the second Spartans in three years from UT to play in the UEFA Champions League, which is the most prestigious professional club championship tournament in the world.
Bush enjoyed a stellar playing career at Tampa and has had tremendous success coaching at nearly every amateur level in the sport. As a player at The University of Tampa, Bush earned Adidas National Player of the Year honors in 1994 when he captained the Spartans to the 1994 NCAA National Championship. A four-time All-south region and All-SSC performer, Bush was the 1st Spartan soccer player to be inducted into the Sunshine State Conference Hall of Fame in 2002 and was named to the Sunshine State Conference Silver Anniversary (25 years) team one year later.
He was also recognized as an All-American in 1991 and 1994 and played on the 1992 US National B Team along with a gold medal at the 1993 US Olympic Festival (South). He went on to play professionally for the USL Tampa Bay Cyclones, the NPSL Tampa Bay Terror, the USL A-League New Orleans Gamblers and Orlando Sundogs.
Bush returned to UT in 2004 for his second stint as an assistant at his alma mater with coach Tom Fitzgerald. He also coached at Tampa under Keith Fulk from 1996-98 when the Spartans won two SSC Championships.
Bush's coaching prowess extends well beyond his time spent on the UT campus. In 2002, he earned a USSF National "A" Coaching License and was a staff coach for the FYSA Olympic Development Program (ODP).
Prior to being the head coach at his alma mater, Bush held the position of director of coaching with HC United Soccer Club from 2001-06. During his time as DOC at HC United, Bush had a total of four players who were named to the final World Cup roster for the US U-17 Men’s National Team, 12 teams advanced to the FYSA State Cup Final Four with five state championships and more than 150 players moving on to play NCAA soccer.
From May 2006 to August 2008 Adrian Bush was named the General Manager/DOC of RSL Florida. In his two years at RSL Florida, 18 teams made the FYSA State Cup Final Four while posting seven state championships and seven runner-ups.
He is currently working at Tampa Bay United as the girls ECNL Director. His 2015 Tampa Bay United U17 Girls won the USYS National Championship in July 2015 after losing the previous season in penalty kicks in the national championship game. It was the clubs first National Championship in their history and the Tampa Bay area first female national champion since 1996. 2015 was a special year for the team as they captured the Florida State title along with the Region 3 championship. His goalkeeper and current UF standout Kaylan Marckese is also a member of the US U20 women's national team.
During his career as a head coach of boys and girls youth teams from the U-13 to U-19, Bush has compiled 19 FYSA state championships as a head coach.
From 1996-2001, Bush was the head boys soccer coach at Gaither High School in Tampa where his overall record was 121-25-9, winning the 4A FHSAA state championship during the 1999-2000 season and finishing as runner-up the following year. In the championship season, Gaither was ranked fifth in the country in the final NSCAA/Adidas National Poll. He was also named State High School Coach of the Year on two occasions.
His most memorable accomplishment was an induction to The University of Tampa Athletic Hall of Fame in 2006.
Bush also received his USSF National GK "A" license, which he completed in February 2014.
Bush is a 1995 graduate of The University of Tampa. He resides in Tampa with his wife Trisha, son Beckham, and stepsons Tripp and Cole.
Adrian Bush Milestone Wins
1 – Christian Brothers (1-0), 9/9/2007
100 – West Alabama (2-0), 9/21/2014
Adrian Bush's Collegiate Coaching Career
|2007||Tampa||13-5-1||NCAA South Regional (1-0-1)|
|2008||Tampa||18-4-1||NCAA Final Four (3-1)|
|2009||Tampa||17-3-1||NCAA Quarterfinals (2-1)|
|2010||Tampa||14-7-1||NCAA South Regional (0-1)|
|2012||Tampa||10-6-1||NCAA South Regional (0-1)|
|2016||Tampa||13-5-3||NCAA Quarterfinals (2-1)|
|2017||Tampa||9-4-3||NCAA South Regional (0-1)|
|Totals||14 seasons||139-88-26||Seven NCAA Appearances|