USTFCCCA Indoor T&F Region Athletes and Coaches of the Year Named in Division I
By Tom Lewis, USTFCCCA
March 7, 2011
NEW ORLEANS – On Monday, the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) announced the USTFCCCA Region Athletes and Coaches of the Year for the NCAA Division I indoor track & field 2011 season. Several of the athletes and coaches will be on hand for the NCAA Division I Indoor Track & Field Championships set for this upcoming weekend, March 11-12, in College Station, Texas. NCAA.com and ESPN3.com will provide live coverage of the national championships.
Men’s Track Athlete of the Year
GREAT LAKES REGION – Andy Bayer – Indiana
Bayer, a sophomore from Leo, Ind., leads the nation in the 3,000 meters with a best time of 7:48.35, also a school record. He scored 21 points at this year’s Big Ten Championships – winning the 3,000 meters, finishing second in the mile, and finishing sixth in the 5,000 meters – to earn Big Ten Track Athlete of the Year honors. He has also recorded NCAA automatic-qualifying times in the mile and as a member of Indiana’s school-record setting distance medley relay.
MID-ATLANTIC REGION – Ryan Foster – Penn State
The senior from Tasmania, Australia, is the 2011 Big Ten Champion for 800 meters and an NCAA automatic qualifier in the mile. He also leads the country in the 1,000 meters with a best time of 2:19.96, a school record; Foster’s fastest mile time of 3:58.49 is also a school record. He also competes as a member of Penn State’s ninth-ranked distance medley relay squad.
MIDWEST REGION – Mookie Salaam – Oklahoma
The Big 12 Outstanding Performer of the Year, Salaam enters the postseason with an undefeated record in the short sprints. His best times of 6.54 seconds in the 60 meters and 20.76 seconds in the 200 meters rank first and eighth, respectively, in the NCAA. Salaam took home Big 12 titles in both events at the 2011 conference championships and has reset both school records during the 2011 indoor campaign. Salaam is a junior from Edmond, Okla.
MOUNTAIN REGION – Patrick Casey – Montana State
Casey has been a middle-distance machine over the 2011 indoor season. He currently ranks number one in the NCAA in the mile with an altitude-adjusted time of 3:54.59 (3:59.76 actual) and number two in the 800 meters at 1:47.08 (1:47.67), again adjusted for altitude. Both times are school records. He won seven of eight individual finals during the season, including a Big Sky Championship in the mile. He also helped the Bobcats win the Big Sky title in the distance medley relay. Casey is a sophomore from Laurel, Mont.
NORTHEAST REGION – Erik van Ingen – Binghamton
Van Ingen shredded the Binghamton record books this indoor season, resetting school records in the 1,000 meters, the mile, the 3,000 meters, and the 5,000 meters. His top time in the mile of 3:57.11 ranks fifth nationally, and he won America East Conference Most Outstanding Track Performer honors after earning conference titles in the 1,000 meters and 5,000 meters, a rare double. He is a senior from Marathon, N.Y.
SOUTH REGION – Kirani James – Alabama
James, a sophomore from Gouyave, Grenada, broke the world junior record in the 400 meters with a clocking of 44.80 seconds, also the fastest in the NCAA and the fourth-fastest in the world this season. He also holds the fastest time in the NCAA and the second-fastest time in the world this season over 200 meters with a top clocking of 20.58 seconds. James is undefeated over 200 meters and 400 meters this season, including a Southeastern Conference championship in the 400 meters.
SOUTH CENTRAL REGION – Keiron Stewart – Texas
Stewart won the 2011 Big 12 Indoor title in the 60-meter hurdles, improving his national-leading mark to 7.66 seconds. The time was also a new school record. Stewart has recorded NCAA automatic-qualifying marks in the sprint hurdles three times during the 2011 Indoor campaign and has shown his versatility by also competing as a member of the Longhorns’ 17th-ranked 4×400-meter relay. Stewart is a sophomore from Kingston, Jamaica.
SOUTHEAST REGION – Samuel Chelanga – Liberty
A senior from Nairobi, Kenya, Chelanga leads the nation over 5,000 meters with a top time of 13:37.55. He has also recorded the fourth-fastest 3,000-meter time all season at 7:50.92. At the 2011 Big South Indoor Championships, Chelanga demonstrated his range by winning the conference title in the mile. He is expected to attempt the 3,000/5,000-meter double at the upcoming NCAA Indoor Championships.
WEST REGION – Elliott Heath – Stanford
Heath, a senior from Winona, Minn., has recorded NCAA automatic-qualifying times in the 3,000 meters, the 5,000 meters, and as a member of Stanford’s distance medley relay squad. He capped an undefeated regular season with a win in the mile at the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championships. Heath’s top time of 13:57.77 in the 5,000 meters ranks second in the country headed into the NCAA Indoor Championships.
Men’s Field Athlete of the Year
GREAT LAKES REGION – Derek Drouin – Indiana
Drouin, a junior from Corunna, Ontario, is one of three high jumpers in the nation to clear at least 7-5 on the season. Drouin’s season best of 7-5¼ (2.27m) was set in winning the Tyson Invitational. Drouin broke the Big Ten meet record with a 7-5 (2.26m) win at the conference meet. Drouin also finished in the nation’s top 35 with a heptathlon score of 5,407. Drouin was also named Big Ten Field Athlete of the Year.
MID-ATLANTIC REGION – Joe Kovacs – Penn State
The senior from Nazareth, Pa., Kovacs was the season’s Big Ten champ in the shot put where he threw for a season’s best of 65-1¼ (19.84m), a mark that ranks among the nation’s top three in the event.
MIDWEST REGION – Erik Kynard – Kansas State
Kynard, a sophomore from Toledo, Ohio, leaped on to the scene with a 7-7¾ (2.33m) clearance in winning the high jump at the Tyson Invitational on February 12. Only two other collegians (Hollis Conway and Brian Brown) in indoor history have jumped higher than Kynard. The sophomore has won all five competitions in which he has entered this year, including the Big 12 Championships. Kynard has won each of those competitions by clearing at least 7-3¾ (2.23m).
MOUNTAIN REGION – Darrell Roddick – Texas Tech
Senior, from North Charleston, S.C., ranks in the top ten nationally in both the triple and high jump. He won the Big 12 Championship in the triple with a season’s best of 53-3 (16.23m). Roddick finished fourth in the Big 12 in the high jump, an event in which he has a season best of 7-3¼ (2.22m).
NORTHEAST REGION – Robert Golabek – Buffalo
A junior from Hamburg, N.Y., Golabek claimed a new all-time MAC record in the shot put with a national top-12 mark of 62-½ (18.91m). Golabek, named MAC Athlete of the Week three times during the year, was the winner of the league’s shot championship with a throw of 61 feet.
SOUTH REGION – Christian Taylor – Florida
Taylor, a junior from Fayetteville, Ga., won the SEC Championship triple jump this season on his final attempt. With a mark of 56-11½ (17.36m) that not only won the event for the third-straight time and set a new SEC record, he became the third all-time best collegian indoors in the event. Only Charlie Simpkins (Baptist, 17.50m, 57-5, 1986) and Mike Conley (Arkansas, 17.40m, 57-1, 1985) have jumped farther in indoor collegiate history than Taylor. The Gator also finished eighth at the SEC meet in the long jump and has a season’s best in the event of 25-0 (7.62m), good for the national top 25.
SOUTH CENTRAL REGION – Walter Henning – LSU
Henning, a senior from Kings Park, N.Y., continues not to miss in the weight throw. The LSU strongman has won ten-straight against collegiate competition with the 35-lb. weight – four of which has come from 2011 season, which included his third-straight SEC crown. At the LSU Twilight on Feb. 18, Henning notched his season’s best throw of 76-6¼ (23.32m).
SOUTHEAST REGION – Miller Moss – Clemson
Moss, a senior from Sumter, S.C., was the ACC heptathlon champion where he set the league’s meet record with 5,881 points. The Tiger leads the nation with a score of 5,903 set in January. Moss has season best of 6.93 in the 60 dash, 7.99 in the 60 hurdles, 6-8¼ (2.04m) in the high jump, 15-9 (4.80m) in the pole vault, 23-11¾ (7.31m) in the long jump, and 43-8½ (13.32m) in the shot put.
WEST REGION – Kurt Felix – Boise State
Felix, a senior and native of St. Davids, Grenada, earned an automatic qualifier in the heptathlon, scoring 5,691 points, in winning the WAC title and setting a new league meet standard. Felix was also the WAC meet’s high-point performer with 36 points, scoring an additional conference crown in the triple jump to go with runner-up showings in the high and long jumps.
Men’s Head Coach of the Year
GREAT LAKES REGION – Ron Helmer – Indiana
In his fourth year, Helmer’s Hoosiers are ranked fourth nationally and took a runner-up finish at the Big Ten Championships after winning four individual titles. The Hoosier men have eight automatic marks, including seven by Helmer’s distance runners, who themselves earned 49 points of IU’s 104½ at the Big Ten Championships. The Hoosiers broke three IU records (60m, 3000m and DMR). Bayer is the national leader in the 3,000m, with a time of 7:48.35, which is the 10th-fastest all-time by a collegiate indoors, the fourth-fastest all-time by an American collegiate indoors and the ninth fastest all-time by an American collegiate regardless of season.
MID-ATLANTIC REGION – Fred Samara – Princeton
Princeton men gave Fred a memorable 33rd year by winning the 2011 Indoor Heptagonals with a record 215 points. In addition to winning 13 out of 18 events, the Tigers set 4 meet records (PV, 800, 1,000 and 4×4 Relay). During the season Princeton defeated Patriot League Champion Navy in a dual meet and Big East Champion Connecticut at the Armory II Meet. His team is ranked No. 2 in the region.
MIDWEST REGION – Steve Plasencia – Minnesota
The Minnesota men won their third Big Ten Conference Championships in a row by scoring in all but three events, including victories in the 600, mile and DMR. For this honor, Steve was named Big Ten Coach of the Year in his third year leading the Gophers. Minnesota currently sits 19th in the national rankings.
MOUNTAIN REGION – Mark Robinson – BYU
In his 25th season, Robinson’s Cougars won the Mountain West Championships for the ninth-straight time and did so in 2011 by over 70 points. BYU scored five conference titles, and, after the league meet, was placed in the nation’s top five as a team.
NORTHEAST REGION – Grey Roy – Connecticut
Grey Roy’s Huskies won the Big East Conference title for the third time in four years with a 136¾-132 victory over Notre Dame and added the NEICAAA and IC4A crowns as well. Roy, in his 22nd season, coaches the squad’s track events. Among UConn’s track powers are senior Michale Rutt who ran an automatic qualifying 1:47.71 in the 800 at the NEICAAA Championships.
SOUTH REGION – Mike Holloway – Florida
Florida’s Mike Holloway led the Gators to their first SEC team crown since 2004 as his squad notched ten individual crowns on the way to topping the podium. Florida has held the No. 1 national ranking for the entire season and will have a bevy of stars that will participate at the NCAA Indoor Championships.
SOUTH CENTRAL REGION – Aaron Fox – UTSA
Fox, UTSA’s head men’s coach since 2003, led the Roadrunners to the 2011 Southland Conference Indoor Track & Field Championship with a total of 153 team points and earned conference recognition as Indoor Coach of the Year. The Roadrunners earned a record-tying six individual titles at the conference championships, capping a regular season that included the resetting of four school records.
SOUTHEAST REGION – Dave Cianelli – Virginia Tech
Under Cianelli’s direction, the Virginia Tech Hokies earned their first-ever Atlantic Coast Conference Indoor Track & Field team title with 140 points, 42 points more than the second place team. Led by three individual titles and 12 All-ACC performances, the team effort moved the Hokies up to 15th in the national rankings. Cianelli is in his tenth year as Director of Virginia Tech’s Track & Field programs.
WEST REGION – Edrick Floreal – Stanford
Floreal led the Cardinal to the 2011 Mountain Pacific Sport Federation Indoor team title and a number 12 national ranking after a strong regular season campaign. The Cardinal were led by three individual champions at the MPSF meet, scoring a narrow victory to earn the program’s first-ever MPSF Championship. Floreal is in his sixth season as the Franklin P. Johnson Director of Track & Field at Stanford.
Men’s Assistant Coach of the Year
GREAT LAKES REGION – Mick Byrne – Wisconsin
In his fourth year working with Wisconsin distance runners, Byrne had three athletes achieve six NCAA automatic qualifying marks. His athletes scored 52 of the team’s 96 points to finish third at the Big Ten Indoor Championships.
MID-ATLANTIC REGION – Steve Dolan – Princeton
Dolan’s distance runners won every event longer than 400 meters and totaled 96 points to lead Princeton to the Heps title. Donn Cabral was named Heps MVP after winning the 3K and 5K at the Championships. The seven-year veteran is part of a staff currently ranked second in the Mid-Atlantic region.
MIDWEST REGION – Joey Woody – Iowa
In his fifth year at Iowa, Woody continues to coach the sprints, hurdles and relays with success. His athletes won the 200 meter and 4X400 meter relay to help Iowa to a fourth place team finish at the Big Ten Indoor Championships. He has two automatic qualifiers, a 60-meter hurdler among the top 15 nationally, and Iowa’s relay currently has the sixth best mark.
MOUNTAIN REGION – Ed Eyestone – BYU
BYU won its ninth consecutive Mountain West Indoor title with the assistance of Ed’s distance runners. In the tenth year coaching at his alma mater, Ed has athletes ranked top 50 in the 800, mile (No. 2 runner), 3K, 5K and DMR (No. 3 team).
NORTHEAST REGION – Annette Acuff – Binghamton
In her 11th year coaching Binghamton’s distance athletes, Annette has an athlete ranked as high as fifth (mile). Her athletes scored 65 points at the America East Conference Championships to lead the Bearcats to a 2nd place team finish. For their success, the staff was named the America East “Staff of the Year”.
SOUTH REGION – Dick Booth – Florida
All three of the second-year Gator coach’s triple jumpers have earned NCAA automatic-qualifying marks, with another auto mark in the long jump. Using a 1-2-3 sweep in the triple jump, his jumpers scored 31 points to lead Florida to the 2011 SEC Indoor title. Pupil Christian Taylor posted the third-best indoor triple jump in collegiate history with a school-record leap of 56-11½, breaking the SEC and facility record en route to the SEC individual title.
SOUTH CENTRAL REGION – Doug Case – Arkansas
In Doug’s third year coaching for the Razorbacks, his sprinters, hurdlers and vaulters helped Arkansas finish second at the Southeastern Conference Championships. His athletes have six automatic qualifiers spread among four athletes and one relay. The 4×400-meter relay won their first SEC title in the event with a time of 3:05.13 to lead collegiate and world rankings.
SOUTHEAST REGION – Bob Phillips – Virginia Tech
Virginia Tech pole vaulters took first-, third-, fourth-, and fifth-place finishes at the ACC Championships to help clinch the team title for the Hokies. In his 26th year coaching at his alma mater, Bob’s vaulters are currently ranked 3-5-11-and-20 in the Nation.
WEST REGION – Jason Dunn – Stanford
Jason’s distance runners contributed 57 points to Stanford’s MPSF Championship including victories in the mile and 5K. Coached 3 athletes to sub 13:50 performances in the 5k including the second and seventh fastest times of the season and the Cardinal DMR team currently sits fourth.
Women’s Track Athlete of the Year
GREAT LAKES REGION – Christiana Manning – Ohio State
The junior from Waldorf, Md. earned conference Track Athlete of the Year honors after winning the 60-meter hurdles and scoring a pair of second place finishes in the 60 meters and 200 meters at the recent Big Ten Indoor Championships. Her 26 team points helped lead Ohio State to its first women’s Indoor title in program history. Manning leads the nation in the 60-meter hurdles, recording a top time of 8.01 seconds.
MID-ATLANTIC REGION – Sheila Reid – Villanova
The senior went undefeated among collegians at distances from 1,000 to 3,000 meters during the regular season, and she ranks number two in the country over 3,000 meters. Reid won the BIG EAST Conference title in the 1,000 meters in meet-record fashion, as well as running on the winning 4×800-meter and distance medley relays. Reid is from Newmarket, Ontario.
MIDWEST REGION – Betsy Saina – Iowa State
Saina took home the conference title in the 5,000 meters and added a third-place finish in the 3,000 meters at the 2011 Big 12 Conference championships. Her 16 team points helped Iowa State tie a program record for the highest team point total at the Big 12 meet. A sophomore from Eldoret, Kenya, her 5,000-meter best of 15:50.74 ranks fourth among NCAA collegians.
MOUNTAIN REGION – Katie Palmer – BYU
The junior from Boulder City, Nev., won the 2011 Mountain West Conference title in the mile and finished sixth in the 800 meters. In the preliminary rounds, she achieved an altitude-converted time of 2:04.02 for 800 meters, the second-fastest time recorded this season by an NCAA collegian and a MWC meet record. Palmer also helped the Cougars capture the 2011 MWC title in the distance medley relay, running the second leg.
NORTHEAST REGION – Lucy Van Dalen – Stony Brook
Van Dalen earned America East Conference Track Performer of the Year honors after winning the mile and running the opening leg on Stony Brook’s conference champion distance medley relay squad. Both performances were new conference records. Van Dalen tops the NCAA leaderboard in the 3,000 meters with a top time of 8:56.77, and she also ranks among the NCAA’s top ten in the mile. Van Dalen is a senior from Wanganui, New Zealand.
SOUTH REGION – Jackie Areson – Tennessee
The senior from Delray Beach, Fla., is undefeated over all distances in 2011, including conference record-breaking performances in the 3,000 meters and as a member of Tennessee’s distance medley relay at the 2011 Southeastern Conference Indoor Championships. She has the nation’s top time in the 5,000 meters, a school record of 15:39.81, and her performances in the 3,000 meters and as a member of the Lady Vols’ distance medley relay also rank in the nation’s top five.
SOUTH CENTRAL REGION – Jessica Beard – Texas A&M
Beard, a senior from Euclid, Ohio, earned Big 12 Performer of the Year honors after a stellar performance at the conference championships. She won the 400 meters in conference-record-setting fashion, anchored the Aggies to a win in the 4×400-meter relay, and finished second in the 200 meters. She stands atop the national leaderboard in both the 400 meters and as a member of Texas A&M’s top-ranked 4×400-meter relay, and she ranks fourth nationally in the 200 meters.
SOUTHEAST REGION – LaKya Brookins – South Carolina
Brookins has had a remarkably consistent 2011 Indoor campaign. The NCAA leader in the 60 meters with a top time of 7.14 seconds, she is 5-1 on the season in the short sprint, recording an NCAA automatic-qualifying time in her last ten-straight 60-meter races. She won the 2011 Southeastern Conference title in the event to cap an outstanding regular-season campaign. Brookins is a senior from Seneca, S.C.
WEST REGION – Jordan Hasay – Oregon
The sophomore leads the NCAA in the mile with a top clocking of 4:34.75 and is the 2011 Mountain Pacific Sports Federation champion in the event. Hasay also earned a top five national ranking and school record with her 3,000-meter performance of 9:05.42, and she runs the lead-off leg on Oregon’s top-ranked distance medley relay. Hasay is from Arroyo Grande, Calif.
Women’s Field Athlete of the Year
GREAT LAKES REGION – Faith Sherrill – Indiana
A senior from Fort Wayne, Ind., Sherrill leads the nation with a season’s best of 59-¾ (18.00m) – a mark that broke the all-time Big Ten record. Sherrill’s best of the year is also among the all-time top ten in the collegiate ranks. Sherrill has claimed four throws of more than 58 feet this season and was a Big Ten champ in the event with a throw of 58-2 (17.73m).
MID-ATLANTIC REGION – Kiani Profit – Maryland
Profit, a senior from Pasadena, Calif., won the ACC title in the pentathlon with a conference-record score of 4,250 points. Profit is among the nation’s top three in the event this year. Profit also claimed a sixth-place finish in the league’s long jump competition with a jump of more than 20 feet.
MIDWEST REGION – Gwen Berry – Southern Illinois
The senior from St. Louis, Mo., leads the nation in the weight throw with a season’s best of 74-6¼ (22.71m). The Saluki placed third in both the shot put and weight throw at the Missouri Valley Championships.
MOUNTAIN REGION – Ada Robinson – BYU
Robinson, a junior from Centerville, Utah, is in the nation’s top three in the high jump with a best on the season of 6-1¼ (1.86m). Robinson won the Mountain West title in the event with a leap over 6-¾ (1.85m).
NORTHEAST REGION – Victoria Flowers – Connecticut
A junior from Providence, R.I, Flowers ranks sixth nationally in the weight throw with a best of 68-9 (20.95m) set in winning the NEICAAA Championship in the event. Flowers also won the shot put competition at the New England meet with a throw of 53-5 (16.28m).
SOUTH REGION – Kimberly Williams – Florida State
Williams, a senior from Kingston, Jamaica, netted impressive performances in both long and triple jumps at the ACC Championships. In becoming the first in ACC Championship history to win an event for a fourth time, Williams triple jumped to a collegiate-leading mark of 45-9¾ (13.96m). In addition, the previous day, Williams won the ACC long jump title with a leap of 21-6 (6.55m) – a performance that ranks No. 2 in the NCAA this year.
SOUTH CENTRAL REGION – Tina Sutej – Arkansas
A junior from Ljubljana, Slovenia, Sutej achieved the chance to break the collegiate record in her last four competitions. Sutej was relieved to finally break through with a clearance of 14-10¾ (4.54m) to reset the record in winning the SEC title in the event. Sutej broke the 2002 record of Amy Linnen and has undoubtedly been the most consistent in the vault this season. Sutej has cleared more than 14-6 (4.42m) four times in 2011 and has won six-straight events.
SOUTHEAST REGION – April Sinkler – Clemson
Sinkler a senior from Stafford, Va., was the named the ACC’s Most Valuable Performer for field events with runner-up showings in the high and long jumps and a third-place notch in the triple at the league meet. Sinkler is in the nation’s top ten in the long and triple jumps with season bests of 21-1½ (6.44m) and 42-11¾ (13.10m), respectively.
WEST REGION – Brianne Theisen – Oregon
Theisen, a senior from Humboldt, Saskatchewan, claimed a collegiate-record in her first performance of the 2011 season. On January 28 at the Washington Invitational, Theisen scored 4,507 points in the heptathlon to top the previous mark of 4,498 set by Arizona State’s Jacquelyn Johnson in 2008. With a high jump of 6-0 (1.83m) in the record-setting pentathlon, Theisen also ranks in eighth in the NCAA this season in that event. At the MPSF Championships, Theisen sat out the pentathlon, but competed in four other events, including leading-off the Ducks 4×400 to victory, placing second in the high jump, and third in the 60-meter hurdles.
Women’s Head Coach of the Year
GREAT LAKES REGION – Karen Dennis – Ohio State
After 13 years, Karen saw her team take home its first Big Ten Indoor Championship. The Buckeyes collected two individual titles, five runner-ups and 16 top-five finishes to produce at team title by 36½ points. Dennis has two athletes that have run NCAA automatic times in the 60-meter hurdles with the nation’s two fastest times. In addition, several athletes broken school records as the squad currently sits 15th on the national rankings list.
MID-ATLANTIC REGION – Pete Farrell – Princeton
Princeton women gave Farrell a memorable 33rd year by winning the 2011 Indoor Heptagonals. Fourteen Tigers earned ECAC qualifying marks and own 19 top-10 marks in the Mid-Atlantic region. Farrell has his women sitting number two in the region.
MIDWEST REGION – Gary Pepin – Nebraska
The Nebraska women defeated Texas A&M, among others, to win the Big 12 Conference Championships and earned Gary the honor of Indoor Big 12 Coach of the Year. In his 13th year at the helm, Pepin has had two athletes automatically qualified for the NCAA Championships on the women’s side – pole vault and pentathlon. The Huskers are currently ranked 14th in the country.
MOUNTAIN REGION – Patrick Shane – BYU
The Cougars of BYU won the Mountain West Championship title for the third-straight year for Patrick Shane in his 30th season. BYU topped TCU by 74½ points for the league crown – their tenth in 12 tries.
NORTHEAST REGION – Bill Morgan – Connecticut
Bill Morgan, in his 30th year overall at Connecticut and seventh as head coach, led UConn to a No. 1 regional ranking throughout the season. The Huskies finished second at the Big East Championships and won the NEICAAA and ECAC title.
SOUTH REGION – Caryl Smith Gilbert – UCF
In her fourth season at UCF, coach Caryl Smith Gilbert helped lead the Knights to their first Conference USA title in school history and did so in come-from-behind fashion. UCF reached as high as No. 8 in the national rankings, marking the school’s first appearance in the top ten.
SOUTH CENTRAL REGION – Dennis Shaver – LSU
In his seventh year at the reins of the LSU program, Shaver led the Tigers to the Southeastern Conference women’s team title. Led by nine student-athletes who earned All-SEC honors via first or second place individual finishes, LSU racked up a total of 135 team points to outdistance second place by a margin of 17 points. With a number two national ranking heading into the NCAA Indoor Championships, the Lady Tigers will look to challenge for top honors to cap a strong 2011 campaign.
SOUTHEAST REGION – Lawrence Johnson – Clemson
Johnson’s Clemson Tigers won the 2011 Atlantic Coast Conference in dominating fashion, earning a 51½-point margin of victory over a top-ten-ranked team. The Tigers were led by five event titles and seven All-ACC performances. Johnson, in his third year as Director of Clemson’s Track & Field programs, has the Tigers poised for a strong run at the NCAA Indoor Championships with a top-ten national team ranking.
WEST REGION – Robert Johnson – Oregon
In just his first year as Oregon’s associate head coach, Johnson led the Ducks to the 2011 Mountain Pacific Sports Federation team title and a number one national ranking. The Ducks have reset six school records during the 2011 indoor campaign, led by Brianne Theisen’s collegiate record in the pentathlon and the top-ranked Oregon distance medley relay squad. Johnson is in his sixth year overall at Oregon.
Women’s Assistant Coach of the Year
GREAT LAKES REGION – Mike McGuire – Michigan
The Wolverines placed fourth at the Big Ten Indoor Championships, with Mike’s athletes winning three titles (DMR, 800, mile). In his 26th year at Michigan, he has two athletes qualified for NCAAs in the 800 and his DMR team has the nation’s fourth-fastest time (11:04.26) and has qualified.
MID-ATLANTIC REGION – Chris Johnson – Penn State
At the Big Ten Championships, Johnson’s athletes won the 200 and 4×400 titles in facility record times. The relay currently sits fifth and Greaves is 11th in the 200, 22nd in the 400 and 24th in the 60 on the national lists. The seven-year Nittany Lion coach also has an athlete ranked 19th in the 60m hurdles.
MIDWEST REGION – John Smith – Southern Illinois
In his seventh year at Southern Illinois, Smith has three Salukis on the national list in the weight throw, including two of the top three. In addition, two of his athletes are in the top 20 in the shot put. Jeneva McCall was named the Missouri Valley Conference outstanding female athlete after defending her title in the shot put.
MOUNTAIN REGION – Jon Murray – Texas Tech
Murray’s distance crew scored 42 points at the Big 12 Indoor Championships and racked up 11 All-Conference honors. His distance medley squad sits at No. 8 in the rankings and Caroline Karunde 17th in the mile. Jon has worked with the Lady Raiders for six years.
NORTHEAST REGION – Gavin O’Neal – Columbia
O’Neal led the Columbia women to their best showing at the Ivy League Championships, as the Lions finished second, with the highest point total in program history. His sprint, jumps and hurdles corps set two championship meet records, two conference records, notched six individual championships and one relay championship title. He has coached four athletes to top 25 rankings, including Hale, who is an NCAA qualifier in the 400m and holds the Ivy League record in the 200m.
SOUTH REGION – Dennis Nobles – Florida State
Nobles has coached the jumps and vault at Florida State for 23 years. In Florida State’s runner-up finish at the ACC Indoor Championships, his jumpers shined as Kim Williams (nationally No. 1 in triple jump and No. 2 in long jump) won two titles and Jenije (No. 4 in triple jump) earned a silver medal.
SOUTH CENTRAL REGION – Vince Anderson – Texas A&M
Anderson’s sprint and hurdle group tallied 84 of the 101 points Texas A&M scored as team runner-up in the Big 12 Championships. Aggie sprinters won the 200, 400 and 4×400 relay while placing second in the 60, 200, 60 hurdles. Two A&M sprinters shared high point honors, scoring 20½ points each. A&M has the current collegiate-leading time in the 4×400 at 3:30.70 and set a Big 12 meet record with a 3:32.85 victory.
SOUTHEAST REGION – Dale Cowper – Louisville
In his fifth year coaching the Cardinals, Dale had athletes finish 1-2-3 in the shot put and 1-2-3-4 in the weight throw to help Louisville win Big East team title. One athlete in each throwing event has automatically qualified for the NCAA Indoor Championships.
WEST REGION – Craig Carter – Arizona
Carter coached Labonte to a MPSF title with a throw of 57-9, taking down a 27-year-old school record. Carter also guided Alyssa Hasslen to an NCAA automatic qualification (and second place MPSF finish for the 1-2 sweep) and Baillie to an All-MPSF finish. In his fifth season, Carter’s athletes scored 27 points to help the team finish second.