Rockford hires new coaches and trainer
Courtesy of Rockford College, Sports Information Department
ROCKFORD, Ill. -- The Rockford College Regents opened the 2011 Spring semester with several changes in the Athletic Department. After three exhaustive, nationwide searches, the Regents hired new coaches to the lead the football and women's soccer programs, as well as a new head athletic trainer. New to the Regents athletics family are head football coach Vic Wallace, head women's soccer coach Scott Westbrook, and athletic trainer Keith Garnett, ATC.
"Each of these men brings vast experience to our community," said interim athletic director Kristyn King. "We look forward to them adding new blood into their programs and most importantly, we look forward to their impact on the lives and experiences of our students. Their backgrounds make them excellent additions to our community as we continue to develop young people anxious to change their world."
Wallace comes to Rockford College with nearly 35 years of proven experience at the NCAA Division I, NCAA Division II, NCAA Division III, and NAIA levels. His overall head coaching record of 176-109-5 has included nine conference championships and 10 national playoff appearances, including one finals appearance and four trips to the semifinals. Wallace has also been named conference Coach of the Year seven times and NAIA Region IV National Coach of the Year twice. He was also given the Contribution to Amateur Football Award by the Memphis Chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame.
Most recently, Wallace spent 15 years as head coach at NAIA Lambuth University in Jackson, Tennessee. During his time at Lambuth, the Eagles won five conference titles and finished second six times.
Wallace also had head coaching stints at NCAA Division III University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota and NAIA William Jewel College in Liberty, Missouri.
Prior to his first head coaching opportunity, Wallace was an assistant coach at NCAA Division I Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas, NCAA Division II Morningside College in Sioux City, Iowa, and NCAA Division III Carroll College in Waukesha, Wisconsin.
In addition to his coaching credentials, Wallace has made significant contributions to academic and administrative missions of his employers. Wallace has spent many years as a physical education instructor, teaching subjects including kinesiology, Nutrition, and Sports Psychology. He has also served as Athletic Director, Special Assistant to the President, and Sports Information Director.
Wallace has his master's degree in Physical Education from the University of Northern Iowa and a bachelor's degree from Cornell College.
Westbrook brings a tremendous amount of playing, coaching, and administrative experience to the Regents sideline. His professional playing career and coaching experience at the NCAA Division I, II, III, NAIA, and high school levels dates back to the early 1980's and has included four conference Coach of the Year awards and one regional Coach of the Year honor.
Most recently, Westbrook enjoyed a stint at NAIA Spring Hill College in Mobile, Alabama. In addition to leading both the women's and men's programs, Westbrook also acted as the institution's Director of Athletics and Recreation.
Prior to Spring Hill, Westbrook was the head women's and men's soccer coach at NAIA The Franciscan University, now Ashford University, in Clinton, Iowa, where he was named 2003 Midwest Collegiate Conference Coach of the Year.
Westbrook has also led programs at NAIA Harris-Stowe State University, NCAA Division II University of Southern Indiana, NCAA Division I University of Arkansas-Little Rock, NCAA Division III Fontbonne University and NAIA Lindenwood University. In addition to coaching at each stop, Westbrook has held additional responsibilities as Sports Information Director, Admissions Counselor, Assistant Registrar, Physical Education Instructor, and Head Resident Advisor.
As a professional player, Westbrook's career included time with the Milwaukee Wave, Oklahoma City Stampede, Wichita Wings, and Detroit Express where he was named Rookie of the Year in 1983.
Westbrook graduated from the University of Evansville with a bachelor's degree in science/psychology before completing his master's degree in business administration at Fontbonne University.
Garnett brings 15 years of athletic training experience with both collegiate and professional athletes in both athletic and clinical settings. Most recently, Garnett spent three years as the Assistant Athletic Trainer and Rehabilitation and Performance Coordinator for the NBA's Houston Rockets. Prior to his time with the Rockets, Garnett was the Certified Athletic Trainer and Rehabilitation Specialist at St. John's Hospital and the HealthTracks Sports Medicine Center through Missouri State University. Garnett also spent a season with the NBA's Charlotte Bobcats as Assistant Athletic Trainer and Head Equipment Manager.
Garnett spent eight years as Head athletic Trainer at Drury University in Springfield, Missouri, where he was responsible for the school's 15 NCAA Division I and II varsity athletic teams. He was also an assistant professor in the school's Exercise and Sport Science Department where he taught classes including Kinesiology and Advanced Athletic Training.
Garnett's work experience also includes athletic training stints with the Springfield-Ozark Mountain Ducks of the Texas-Louisiana Baseball League, the Sonoma Crushers of the Western Baseball League, the Arena Football League's Houston Thunderbears, and the NFL's Kansas City Chiefs.
Garnett received his bachelor's degree from the University of Oklahoma and his master's degree in Physical Education/ Exercise and Sport Science from Central Missouri State University.