Michael L. Covone
Director of Athletics
Michael L. Covone has served with the Buccaneer Athletic Department since its inception in 1984, first as the head women's soccer coach and now since 1998, as the Director of Athletics.
One of the most respected leaders in college athletics, Covone served on the NCAA Management Council from 2002 to 2008 and as vice-chair / chair of the Championship Committee from 2006-2008. He also served on numerous other NCAA Division II committees including the NCAA Budget & Finance Committee and the NCAA Community Advisory Task Force, NCAA Sportsmanship & Ethical Conduct Committee, the NCAA Championship/ Eligibility Project committee, and the NCAA Women's Soccer Committee. Covone was the United States Olympic Development South Regional Women's Soccer Coach from 1985 to 1991, and was on the USYSA National Staff from 1984 to 1993.
Covone has been honored for his work, winning the 2004-2005 General SportsTurf Systems "Athletic Director of the Year" for the Southeast Region. In addition, Covone was the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) National "Coach of the Year' in 1989 and 1991, and regional coach of the year in 1988, 1992 and 1993. In 1997 he was inducted into the Sunshine State Conference "Hall of Fame' for his work as a pioneer of women's soccer and as an administrator.
Covone guided the women's soccer program to a 140-32-9 record in 11 seasons from 1984-94. The Bucs advanced to the NCAA Tournament seven times; had 11 consecutive winning seasons, including a berth in the 1987 NCAA Division I tournament. Barry played in the first six NCAA Division II finals, winning three national titles in 1989, 1992 and 1993. The program produced 15 NSCAA All-Americans, two NCAA National Players of the Year, and nine scholar All-Americans during his tenure.
Along with guiding the women's soccer program to the summit of Division II, Covone also served as associate director of athletics from 1988-96 and executive associate director of athletics at Barry University from 1996-1998. In 1998, he became the third director of athletics in Barry history. As director, he has overseen the Buccaneers' rise to national prominence as a department. The Bucs finished the 1997-98 athletic year ranked third overall in the prestigious Sears Director's Cup competition and was the highest-ranked private institution in the country. Since then, the Bucs have finished as one of the top programs every year, and were again one of the top private institutions in the country in 2013.
Barry University has won 11 NCAA National Championships, 54 Sunshine State Conference Championships, and has had 261 NCAA All-Americans and 299 Scholar All-Americans. Barry has also had eight NCAA "Women of the Year' finalists, five Florida NCAA "Women of the Year' award winners, Two NCAA Walter Byers Scholarship recipients, four NCAA Post-graduate scholarship recipients, and three NACDA Post-Graduate scholarship recipients.
2012-2013 Athletic Highlights
Learfield Director’s Cup Final Standings
Out of 297 Institutions, Barry University finished 13th (Top 5%)
4 Sunshine State Conference Championships
Men's Tennis; Women's Tennis; Men's Golf; Women's Rowing
2 NCAA Division II National Championships
1 individual NCAA National Championship Title
Seven 2012-2013 NCAA Tournament Bids:
Women's Soccer, Men's Tennis, Women's Tennis, Men's Golf, Women's Golf, Softball, Women's Rowing
Four teams were ranked #1 in the nation in spring, 2013:
Men's Golf, Men's Tennis, Women's Tennis, Women's Rowing
Covone has been a fixture in South Florida sports for many years. He serves on the prestigious Orange Bowl Committee (and football committee), was Vice Chair of the Orange Bowl's Youth Football League (YFL) and the Orange Bowl Basketball Classic. He is also a member of the Greater Miami Dade Chamber of Commerce Sports Council, on the Board of Directors of the Miami Dade Sports Commission, and was involved in the South Florida Olympic Soccer Committee. Covone also serves on the NACDA Athletic Directors Association (DII) Board of Directors and was a member of the 1999 Super Bowl Host Committee.
A native of Hialeah, Florida, Covone picked up two All-America awards while attending Miami-Dade North Community College and was selected as an alternate for the United States Olympic Team in 1980. After turning professional, he spent two years with the St. Louis Steamers and Phoenix Inferno of the Major Indoor Soccer League. He served one year as the men's assistant coach at Miami-Dade South and won the NJCAA National Championship before coming to Barry to start the Buccaneer program in 1984.
Covone received his Bachelor's degree and Master's degree in Higher Education Administration from Barry University.
While accomplishing many things within the community, he is also recognized for the continued development/ vision of the Barry University Athletic program. Since 1998, the athletic program has grown and continues to excel in academics and athletics. Listed below are just a few program highlights and additions since 1998:
- Continued academic integrity of the intercollegiate athletic program --Academically, 2012-2013 was again one of the best years in the history of Barry University's athletic program. Barry University’s athletic teams set new academic records in the classroom in the fall 2012 and spring 2013 semesters – Fall 2012 Team - Average Term GPA3.307/ Team - Average Cum GPA3.298
- 74.3 percent of all student-athletes had a fall term GPA of 3.0 or higher.*
- 5.5 percent of all student-athletes had a 4.0 fall term GPA.*
- 74.3 percent of all student-athletes had a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher following fall 2012 term.*
- Barry's 12 athletic teams posted a record-high 3.301 average cumulative grade point average in the spring, 2013. The Buccaneers average team term GPA was 3.234. All 12 teams had a cum GPA above 3.0 for the second straight semester. It marked the first time in school history all 12 teams had GPAs over 3.0 for both fall and spring semesters.
- The Buccaneers women's golf team had the highest GPA at 3.511 in spring, 2013. Men's soccer was second with program-high 3.436, and volleyball was third at 3.435.
- Team - Average Term GPA 3.234 Team - Average Cum GPA 3.301
- 70.8 % of all student-athletes had a spring 2013 term GPA of 3.0 or higher.
- 6.8 % of all student-athletes had a 4.0 spring 2013 term GPA.
- 70.8 % of all student-athletes had a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher following spring 2013 term.
- Historically, 7-8 of 12 teams qualify for NCAA Post-season competition.
- Highest Graduation Rate of student-athletes in the Sunshine State Conference
- Full-Time Assistant coaches hired
- Launched new "Athletic Website" GoBarryBucs.com
- Launched electronic newsletter -- BUC-E-NEWS and TV show "Buccaneer Insider"
- Launched social media communication, Internet Broadcast of Athletic events with Live Stats and audio broadcasts of athletic contest, eScores, and video streaming of on campus events
- Added lights to four athletic fields (soccer, baseball, softball, campus recreation)
- Formalized corporate sponsorship agreements with Coca-Cola, Nike, Papa Johns, Boston Market, Orange Bowl, and other local establishments
- Increased total gifts to the department and has enjoyed increased media coverage every year
- Hosted NCAA Men's & Women's Soccer National Championships in 1999 & 2000 (first institution to host both championships at the same time, at the same site) and produce live web broadcast of all games
- Added the NCAA Champs/ Life Skills program
- Added the sport of Women's Golf (12th sport overall)
- Received a "Perfect Score" from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) Accreditation visiting committee -- No recommendations or suggestions.
*Indicates new record high.