N.C. State soccer coach retires

Tarantini led Pack to Final Four

Staff WriterNovember 17, 2010 

— After 25 seasons, 234 wins, an ACC title and a trip to soccer's Final Four, N.C. State men's soccer coach George Tarantini retired on Tuesday.

"It's time," Tarantini, 60, said Tuesday. "Every dream has a beginning and eventually has to end. That's how it is."

Tarantini, 234-197-43 as the school's winningest soccer coach, led the Wolfpack to nine NCAA tournament appearances, including the national semifinals in 1990. The Wolfpack also won the ACC title in '90.

Tarantini was hired in 1982 by former athletic director Willis Casey and worked with some of N.C. State's legendary coaches, including his late friends Jim Valvano, the former men's basketball coach, and Kay Yow, the former women's basketball coach.

In his 29 seasons, the first three as an assistant, Tarantini mentored some of the best players in the ACC and U.S. men's national team, including midfielder Tab Ramos, forward Roy Lassiter and defender Pablo Mastroeni.

"I've had the privilege to coach and work with so many great people and for such a passionate fan base," Tarantini said. "I have so many great memories."

First-year N.C. State athletic director Debbie Yow thanked Tarantini for his career at N.C. State and said there would be a national search for his replacement.

Assistant coach Dan Popik will be the interim coach.

jp.giglio@newsobserver.com or 919-829-8938

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