Meet Chris Keenan, the Owner of Kingdom Sports

Chris KeenanChris Keenan and his wife Stephanie founded the Kalamazoo Kingdom in 1995.  The Kingdom was initially a semi pro team that competed in the modern day United Soccer Leagues.  The Kingdom grew into youth soccer camps and training.  In 2004 the Keenan’s purchased land and built the 60,000 square foot Kingdom Indoor Center which is now home of the Kingdom.  In the same year the Kingdom Soccer Club was created with a goal of developing talent for College and beyond.   After  building a relationship and spending some time with Rene Meulensteen, Manchester United First Team Coach and Head of the Manchester United Youth Academy, Chris changed his player development philosophy.  As a guest of Meulensteen on a ten day trip to see the inner working of Manchester United Chris returned and developed the ReThinkSoccer positive player development program.  This program is the cornerstone of all Kingdom player development initiatives and the results can be seen in player and team successes. Before implementing this program, Kingdom Soccer Club had NO State Cup championships and NO Super Y National Championships between 2004 – 2014. Since the adoption of the ReThinkSoccer curriculum over the last 5 years, Kingdom Soccer Club has been successful with 6 State Cup Champions, 4 Super Y Championships and now 1 USYS National Championship.

Notables

  • One of only two soccer players to play in two NCAA Division I National Championship games for two different teams: Indiana University in 1984 and San Diego State University in 1987.
  • Played on the 1984 Indiana University team that still holds the NCAA Division I unbeaten streak at 46 games.
  • 1985 led the Hoosiers in scoring with 12 goals and 4 assists.
  • Captained Indiana University in 1986 for the NCAA’s winningest soccer coach, Jerry Yeagley.
  • Was a 1987 Hermann trophy finalist for College Soccer’s National Player of the Year.
  • Was the 14th overall pick in the 1988 Professional Draft, by the San Diego Sockers.
  • Played professionally for the San Diego Nomads and the Detroit Rockers.
  • TV color commentator in 1992 for the Detroit Rockers on what is now Fox Sports Detroit.
  • Current ESPN 3 color commentator for Men’s College Soccer
  • 1993 at the age of 28, was hired by Bill Davidson to be the youngest professional head coach in the United States, coaching the Detroit Neon of the CISL at the Palace of Auburn Hills.
  • 1995 founded Kalamazoo Kingdom.
  • Coached at the highest levels of US Soccer, including professional, NCAA Division I, and National Olympic Development programs.
  • Is a proud member of three Athletic Halls of Fame.
  • Developer of the ReThinkSoccer Curriculum.

Athletic Halls of Fame

  • United Soccer Leagues – Class of 2005
  • San Diego State University – Class of 2002
  • Gull Lake High School – Inaugural class of 2000

Coaching Career

  • 1988 – 1990: San Diego State University (Assistant Coach).
  • 1993 – 1995: Detroit Neon (Continental Indoor Soccer League, Head Coach). Team played at The Palace of Auburn Hills.
  • 1995 – 2003: Kalamazoo Kingdom (United Soccer Leagues)
  • 2000: United Soccer Leagues Olympic Development Program National Camp

Playing Career

Gull Lake High School
1980 – 1984: Captain

Indiana University
1984: NCAA Finalist and first team All-Freshman All-American
1985: Leading scorer
1986: Indiana University Captain and played on the North team at the 1986 Olympic Festival Trials at Rice University in Houston.

San Diego State University
1987: NCAA Finalist
1987: Hermann Award Finalist
1987: Senior Bowl – Los Angeles

San Diego Sockers
1988: 14th overall pick in the Major Indoor Soccer League

San Diego Nomads (Western Alliance)
1988 – 1990

Detroit Rockers (National Professional Soccer League)
1990 – 1991

Keenan coached these notable former US-based players…

Caleb Porter
Current Head Coach of Columbus Crew of Major League Soccer (MLS)and 2020 MLS Champion
Head Coach of Portland Timbers of MLS and 2015 MLS Champion
Head Coach University of Akron – 2010 NCAA Division 1 Champion

Brandon Bye
Current professional player with New England Revolution of Major League Soccer

Eric Wynalda
USA Honda Player of the Decade 1990’s
USA 3 World Cups – 106 appearances – 34 goals

Marcelo Balboa
USA 3 World Cups – 128 appearances –13 goals – current ABC, ESPN US National team announcer

B.J. Snow
Former US Women’s Under 17 National Team
Former UCLA women’s head coach

Nick Carlin-Voigt
Current University of Portland Head Coach
Former UCLA men’s assistant coach

Bryan “The Goose” Finnerty
Detroit Rockers goalkeeper for 10 years

Keenan coached these English professional players…

Steve Kinsey, Manchester City
Detroit Neon 1994 – 1995

Terry “The Spider” Rowe, Brentford FC
Detroit Neon 1994 – 1995

Jon Challinor, Cambridge United
Kalamazoo Kingdom 1999 – 2000