17 Things you need to know about Matthew Hollyoak


Junior defender Matthew Hollyoak led the UNF men’s soccer team to its current 9-10 season as the team captain. Hollyoak, who was born Aug. 17, played in all 17 games of the 2007 season. He met up with the Spinnaker to share about his experiences at UNF on and off the field. Below are 17 things you must know about the captain.

1. Hollyoak was born and lived in London, England. And he has the accent to prove it.   2. He learned to play soccer when he was just 8 months old. His dad would put him in the baby bouncer and roll a soccer ball to him to kick.   3. In high school, he was picked up by the professional soccer team West Ham and played for a season.   4. The biggest moment of his childhood – Hollyoak was selected to play on England’s national team. “It was huge for me,” he said. “I’d say it was the pinnacle of my career so far.”   5. He chose to come to UNF after talking to the men’s head coach Ray Bunch, another England native.   6. A lot of his friends in England signed with professional teams when they turned 15 and 16.  7. His family still lives in England but comes to Florida to watch major games like the rival games against Jacksonville University.   8. His father, who is his role model, played professional soccer in England. His grandfather did too.   9. Hollyoak would love to go back to England and play professional soccer after graduating.   10. He is getting a bachelor’s degree in sports management.   11. If professional soccer does not work out, Hollyoak plans to pursue a master’s degree in the U.S.   12. He received the 2007 Atlantic Sun all-academic honors.   13. Becoming the captain of the UNF men’s soccer team has been the highlight of his collegiate career. “I don’t really do anything different now,” Hollyoak said. “I think I must have been doing something right before. Now I get to have fun teaching the younger players.”   14. He has a younger brother named Nickholas.   15. Before every game, he grabs dinner at Panera: Tomato soup and a turkey sandwich.   16. His favorite music to listen to when preparing for a game is an English band – the Kooks.   17. Hollyoak has 524 friends on Facebook.

Compiled by Holli Welch.