Avery has been instrumental in guiding Notre Dame to four consecutive seasons with at least 12 wins. The Irish's 53 victories over the last four years are the most over a four-season stretch since 1986-87-88-89. He also has helped elevate Notre Dame's recruiting efforts each of the last five years, which have produced unprecedented success for the Fighting Irish. In 2004, Notre Dame won the program's first-ever BIG EAST regular-season title and entered the NCAA tournament as the fifth-seed for the second straight year. Avery, along with head coach Bobby Clark and assistant coach Brian Wiese, garnered the 2004 BIG EAST Coaching Staff of the Year award for their efforts. The Fighting Irish enjoyed similar success in 2003 as they climbed as high as No. 3 in the national polls, won the BIG EAST tournament and made it to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament for the first time.
"Mike has been fantastic," states Clark. "He was here the year prior to my arrival and was a huge help in the transition stage. He is clearly a top-class and first-rate coach. He has been a head coach in the past and just like Brian (Wiese) he has a tremendous rapport with the team and can handle any situation from recruiting to coaching. He has been a great help to me over my first four years at Notre Dame."
In three campaigns as men's coach at Cal State San Bernardino, Avery led the Coyote program through a successful rebuilding campaign. Avery's '99 squad continued the trend of improving each year under his direction by finishing with an 8-11-1 record. In six seasons as a head men's coach, Avery has compiled a 62-58-5 (.516) mark.
Avery began his coaching career at nearby Bethel College in Mishawaka, Ind., in 1994 when the native of San Jose, Calif., transformed that program into one of the top small college NAIA men's soccer teams. In his final season at the school in 1996, he led a team which had won just three games in the season prior to his arrival to a 17-4-1 mark as the Pilots won the school's first-ever Mid-Central Conference crown. In three seasons at Bethel, his team posted an overall 43-21-2 mark. In Avery's first campaign (1994), the Pilots had a 10-9-1 record and then improved that by six wins the following season as they posted a 16-8-0 ledger. His efforts earned him conference coach-of-the-year honors in both '95 and '96 as well as Great Lakes Region coach-of-the-year accolades.
Avery played from 1986-89 at Westmont College in Santa Barbara, Calif., where he was a two-time honorable mention All-American and four-time all-conference and all-Far West standout for the NAIA school which made three national tournament appearances during his four seasons. In his senior season, he served as team captain on a squad which advanced to the national semifinals.
Born Sept. 19, 1968, he received his degree in physical education in 1990, and following graduation, played professionally both in the United States and abroad for several teams. During a four-year span, he enjoyed stints with Real Santa Barbara and Askims (Sweden). He also served as a player-coach for the Indiana Invaders.
Avery received his master's degree in kinesiology from Midwestern State in 1994. His wife Carin is the head women's volleyball coach at Valparaiso University. The couple welcomed their first child, Alex Roddy, in November of 2003.