FRISCO, Texas - Friday was a special day for former FC Dallas head coach Schellas Hyndman, as he was inducted into the United Soccer Coaches Hall of Fame at its annual convention in Baltimore, Maryland. The organization, founded in 1941, is the largest community of soccer coaches in the world.
“When I started coaching, I didn’t wake up and say, ‘I want to go to the Hall of Fame,” Hyndman said during his speech at last week's awards banquet. “I just wanted to make players better.”
Hyndman spent five seasons at the helm of FC Dallas, coaching the squad to the MLS Cup Final in 2010, ultimately losing 2-1 to the Colorado Rapids. He also took home MLS Coach of the Year honors that year, becoming the first FC Dallas coach to claim the award.
“I really feel that I’ve touched people’s lives in different ways and hopefully made them better people and better players,” he said in an interview with United Soccer Coaches.
Hyndman resigned following the 2013 season, but forever left his mark with the club. On top of his successes in the 2010 season, Hyndman helped the club write more history, becoming the first MLS team to defeat a Mexican opponent in Mexico. The 1-0 win over Pumas in Mexico City helped FC Dallas finish third in group play, however the team did not advance to the knockout stages.
In his early years, Hyndman was raised in Macau, China, before coming to the United States as a refugee. He settled in Springfield, Ohio and soon after was introduced by his cousin to the sport he has blessed since his playing days at Eastern Illinois University.
His journey took him around the world. After playing a season with the Cincinnati Comets, Hyndman traveled to Brazil, where he served as a staff coach with São Paulo Futebol Clube in 1976.
“I wanted to be in a country where soccer was a little bit more passionate,” he said. A year later, while back in the United States on vacation, Hyndman’s coaching journey took a new twist.
He returned to Eastern Illinois University, this time taking on the head coach’s job. He built up a 98-24-11 record over his seven seasons with the program, helping guide the Panthers to a number of high finishes, including runners-up to Alabama A&M in the 1979 NCAA Division II tournament. Hyndman was inducted into the school’s Athletic Hall of Fame in 2001.
“I think back to my first year coaching in college,” Hyndman said. “Someone said to me, ‘You need to go to the [United Soccer Coaches] convention.’ So, I went to the convention in 1978. That was one of the most memorable times of my life.” He later went on to serve as the organization’s president in 2005.
Following his time at Eastern Illinois, Hyndman took the head coach’s job at Southern Methodist University in 1984. In twenty-four seasons with the Mustangs, Hyndman amassed an impressive 368-96-38 record. He won eight Coach of the Year awards and took home five regional Coach of the Year awards as well. He was enshrined into the Walk of Fame at Toyota Stadium in 2007.
This earned him the job with FC Dallas, where he continued to build upon the club’s ideals and foundations. He signed numerous Homegrown talents, including Victor Ulloa, Kellyn Acosta and Jesse Gonzalez.
Today, Hyndman continues to coach. He can now be found on the sidelines at Grand Canyon University, where his team recently made the post-season in 2018.