Two-time National Player of the Year and Creighton Athletics Hall of Famer Johnny Torres is back for his sixth season on the Bluejay bench, following a decade-long professional soccer career. Arguably the greatest soccer star in Creighton and Missouri Valley Conference history, Torres played for the Bluejays from 1994-97.
Torres was named the NSCAA Midwest Region Assistant Coach of the Year following the 2011 season, where he played an integral part in Creighton’s run to the College Cup, finishing fourth in the nation last season.
Three times in Torres’ first five seasons on the Bluejay bench, the Creighton men’s soccer staff has been honored as the MVC Coaching Staff of the Year, earning the nod in 2008, 2010 and 2011. His roles on the coaching staff include scouting, recruiting and training. He also plays a major role in working with student-athletes on service projects in the Omaha area.
Torres himself has always been active in service throughout his collegiate and professional playing days. He visited thousands of youth in the Omaha community in the 1990s, while he was tabbed the Children’s Miracle Network National “Hometown Hero” in 1996. A native of Medellin, Colombia, he was honored by the Omaha City Council with “Johnny Torres Day” on Oct. 27, 1996, in recognition of earning U.S. Citizenship just days before, his community service and his soccer skills.
Torres was named to the MVC All-Centennial Team in 2006 and in 2011 he became the first men’s soccer player inducted into the Missouri Valley Conference Hall of Fame. In 1997 he won both the Hermann Trophy and the Missouri Athletic Club Award (prior to the combination of the awards), recognizing him as the National Player of the Year. In 1996, he earned National Player of the Year honors from Soccer America after leading the Bluejays to their first College Cup appearance. When his career ended, he was the Valley’s all-time scoring (128 points) and assists (36) leader.
He was the fifth overall pick in the first round of the 1998 MLS Draft by the New England Revolution. He played for the Revolution for four seasons and also played for the Miami Fusion and Chicago Fire of Major League Soccer, before continuing his career in the USL for the Minnesota Thunder and the Milwaukee Wave United, before moving to indoor soccer with the Milwaukee Wave. In 2010, he returned to the professional ranks as a player, leading the Omaha Vipers of the Major Indoor Soccer League (MISL) in goals scored. In 2009, he played on the United States Adult Soccer Association Over 30 championship team– Nebraska 402 – which qualified and participated in the U.S. Open Cup in 2009.
Torres, 35, returned to the Creighton campus in the fall of 2007 to complete his undergraduate degree while serving as the Bluejays’ undergraduate manager. After receiving the NCAA Degree Completion Award, he earned his degree in social work from Creighton in the spring of 2008.
The 2004 Creighton Athletics Hall of Fame inductee, two-time first-team All-American and three-time first-team all-region and all-conference selection has a 6-year-old son, Dominic.