Former Gamecock letterwinner returns as assistant coach.
South Carolina and Wake Forest to play at Stone Stadium on Thursday.
Gamecocks and Mustangs to play on Friday at 6 p.m. ET
Gamecocks continue Conference USA action on Saturday at Stone Stadium vs. Marshall.
Mike Babst begins his fifth season as an assistant coach at South Carolina. He joined the Gamecock program in July 2007 following three seasons at Duquesne University.
Babst is involved in all areas of coaching at South Carolina, with a focus in video breakdown and analysis, recruiting in regions 1 and 2, conditioning, scheduling and goalkeepers. Since arriving on campus, prior to the 2007 season, Babst has helped the Gamecocks secure four top-25 recruiting classes (2008 - No. 14, 2009 - No. 23, 2010 - No. 16, and 2011 No. 11 (CollegeSoccerNews.com).
Babst works primarily with the Gamecock goalkeepers, including All-Conference USA honoree and MLS draftee Jimmy Maurer. Under Babst's direction, Maurer earned numerous awards in net for Carolina, including All-South Region First Team, Conference USA Freshman of the Year (2007), and numerous C-USA Defensive Player of the Week awards.
South Carolina won the 2010 Conference USA Tournament Championship, earning the No. 7 national seed in the NCAA Tournament en route to a first-round bye. The home field advantage propelled the Gamecocks to a 1-0 win over Duke during the second round, advancing the squad to the Round of 16. South Carolina concluded the season ranked No. 12 in the final NSCAA Top 25 Poll.
Three Gamecocks were selected in the 2011 MLS Supplemental Draft, as Sam Arthur (Chicago Fire), Blake Brettschneider (DC United) and Maurer (New York Red Bulls) were drafted following their senior seasons at Carolina.
In Babst's three seasons at Duquesne, the Dukes compiled a 37-18-3 record and earned at least a share of the Atlantic 10 Conference title in both 2004 and 2005. Babst also coached the 2005 Atlantic 10 Conference Defensive Player of the Year, goalkeeper Zach Varga, and the Dukes moved as high as No. 13 in the national polls, then the highest in school history, during that season.
Prior to joining the Duquesne staff, Babst coached at Washington and Lee University. In two seasons at W&L, he supervised the goalkeepers, directed the offseason strength and conditioning program and assisted in all areas of collegiate coaching, including recruiting, scouting, researching and organizing visits. The 2003 squad was ODAC runner-up, while Babst helped secure one All-American in each recruiting class while he was there.
Babst played goalkeeper collegiately at Boston College from 1996-1999. He holds his NSCAA Advanced National License and a level two goalkeeper certification. The Pittsburgh, Pa., native owns a bachelor's degree in economics and marketing from Boston College (1999) and law degree from the University of Pittsburgh (2007).