Matt Payne is in his second season as head coach of Johnson & Wales Men's Soccer. His first season saw the team post a record of 13-2, and reach the USCAA Division II Men's Soccer National Championship Game. The Wildcats were ranked #1 in each of week of the USCAA Coaches' Poll during the season. Under Payne's direction, three Wildcats were named USCAA All-American, and NCCSIA All-State.
Payne came to Johnson & Wales from Brewton-Parker College in Georgia, where he spent four seasons as Head Men's Soccer Coach and Associate Athletic Director for Internal Operations. Additonally, he served one season as the Head Women's Soccer Coach for the Barons in 2015-2016. While at Brewton-Parker, Payne also served as the school's Champions of Character representative to the NAIA. While at Brewton-Parker, he made the Barons instantly competitve on the field, decreasing the number of goals allowed by 46 during his first two years, despite having only one senior on each of those teams. His student-athletes have been recognized numerous times for their athletic and academic achievement, including 9 Southern States All-Academic selections in 2015.
In his role as Associate Athletic Director for Internal Operations, Payne was a key member of the Brewton-Parker athletic staff. He was responsible for game day operations, academic accountability, and fiscal responsibility. His Champions of Character duties entailed helping all coaches implement character building tools into their interactions with their student-athletes.
Additionally, he has been an assistant coach with Mississippi Barilla FC for the last three years, helping the PDL team to two playoff appearances in three years. He has also coached at the club level for Athens United and Oconee Futbol Club.
Payne played collegiately for nationally ranked Young Harris College, where he was a President's Award recipient. He continued his undergraduate education at the University of Georgia where he earned a B.B.A in Business Management from the Terry College of Business.
He also serves as Sports Information Director at Johnson & Wales, where he is responsible for the department's athletic communications.