2013 Hall of Fame class to be inducted at January dinner
GREENSBORO, NC – Curt Johnson, Eddie Robinson and the late Barry Howard have been selected as the North Carolina Soccer Hall of Fame Class of 2013, which will be inducted at the annual Hall of Fame dinner, January 26, 2013 in Greensboro, NC.
The ‘77 Raleigh Spartans, winners of the 1995 US Youth Soccer Under-18 Francis J. “Frank” Kelly Cup national championship, have also been selected as the second team to be recognized on the NCSHOF National Champions Hall of Honor. That Spartans team was coached by longtime Raleigh Broughton HS coach, Izzy Hernandez, who is also a member of the North Carolina Soccer Hall of Fame.
Curt Johnson, a native of Raleigh and Capitol Area Soccer League product, was an All-State midfielder at Ravenscroft School, and stayed in the area for college. He played for the N.C. State Wolfpack from 1987-90. During that time, Johnson started 72 games during his four-year career, and as a senior, helped the Pack to the ACC Championship and the NCAA semifinals as a team captain. He would later serve as head coach at Ravenscroft and later as an assistant coach at N.C. State.
Johnson is currently President of the North American Soccer League’s Carolina RailHawks, winning the 2011 NASL Regular Season Championship. Johnson’s administrative resume also includes holding the General Manager position with the Richmond Kickers and Major League Soccer’s Kansas City Wizards. He spent seven years in Kansas City as GM, leading the club to capture the 2000 MLS Supporter’s Shield, 2000 MLS Cup, and 2004 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.
Robinson, who grew up in Greensboro and was an all-state player at Page High School, was a four-year letterwinner at UNC Chapel Hill (1996-2000). He was selected by the San Jose Earthquakes as the #20 overall pick of the 2001 MLS SuperDraft. He played 11 seasons with the same MLS franchise, first with the Earthquakes and then with the Houston Dynamo when the franchise moved to Texas in 2005.
A starter on defense, Robinson was a member of four MLS Cup championship teams and was selected as an MLS All-Star in 2005. He made 166 total MLS appearances with the Earthquakes and Dynamo.
He played for the U.S. Men’s National Team in a 2-0 win against Sweden in 2008, scoring his only international goal in his only international appearance.
Howard grew up in Buies Creek and saw his first soccer game when he watched the Campbell University men play. He helped start the first high school soccer team in Harnett County at Buies Creek High School. Upon graduation he enrolled at Campbell where he was a four-year letterwinner and was coached by the legendary Jim “Catfish” Cole, also a member of the N.C. Soccer Hall of Fame. Upon graduation from Campbell he began a career as a teacher at Buies Creek High School, and as that school’s boys soccer coach, and later after consolidation at Harnett Central.
Howard was instrumental in helping to bring youth soccer to numerous communities throughout eastern North Carolina, and assisted in the formation of high school programs in many of those communities. He was also an assistant men’s coach for seven seasons at Campbell, and later served two years as the Camels head coach (1989-1990).
Howard resigned his coaching position after the 1990 season to devote full-time as the administrator of the Howard Fund, which had been established in 1926 by his father, Rev. Charles Barrett Howard, Sr. Howard was inducted into the Campbell University Sports Hall Of Fame in 2003. He passed away on Dec. 5, 2008 at the age of 63
The North Carolina Soccer Hall of Fame inducted its first class in 1997. The three-member class of 2013 will bring the total number of honorees to 46. The HOF dinner will be held at the Sheraton Four Seasons in Greensboro. Tickets to the event are available to the general public.
For more information about the North Carolina Soccer Hall Of Fame, visit www.ncsoccerhalloffame.com.