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UCLA's Jill Ellis resigns for USSF position

1/6/2011

Jill Ellis, who guided UCLA's women's team to seven successive NCAA College Cup final four appearances and eight in 10 years, has resigned to become development director of U.S. Soccer's women's youth national teams program, the school announced.

B.J. Snow, who has been on Ellis' staff since 2006 and was promoted to assistant head coach in 2009, will take charge of the Bruins.

Ellis, who became UCLA coach in 1999, posted a 229-45-14 record in 12 seasons at Westwood, transforming the Bruins into a national power with final-four appearances in 2000 and 2003-09, reaching the final in 2000 and 2004-05. UCLA was 13-8-2 and reached the third round of the NCAA tournament last season.

She has extensive experience with the U.S. youth national teams and was head coach of the side that reached the quarterfinals of the FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup last year.

"Today is so bittersweet for me," Ellis said in a statement released by the school. "While I am excited and energized for the new challenges ahead with U.S. Soccer, it is also sad to depart an amazing university with so many wonderful friendships and memories. UCLA has been my home for the past 12 years and college soccer my life for more than 21 years, but I am ready to help U.S. Soccer in its commitment to continue the evolution of the women's game."

Former UC Irvine women's coach April Heinrichs, a former U.S. women's national team captain and coach, will be the technical director of the national teams, the top position. Hers and Ellis' posts are newly created.

Snow, who is married to U.S. women's national team forward/midfielder Lindsay Tarpley, was a standout defender at Indiana University in 1996-99, helping the Hoosiers to four Big Ten Conference titles and NCAA championships in 1998 and 1999. He was an assistant coach to Ellis with the U.S. under-20 team and has served as the Bruins' head coach when Ellis has been away with national teams.

Across town at USC, Harold Warren -- head coach Ali Khosroshahin's top assistant -- has departed to become head coach at Alabama-Birmingham.