National Indoor Track & Field Awards Announced for NCAA Division I

By Tom Lewis, USTFCCCA

March 14, 2012   

NEW ORLEANS – The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) announces the national award winners for 2012 NCAA Division I Indoor Track & Field season as chosen by the nation’s coaches. Arizona’s Lawi Lalang, Duke’s Curtis Beach, Kansas’ Diamond Dixon, and Oregon’s Brianne Theisen claimed honors as National Athletes of the Year. National-championship coaches Florida’s Mike Holloway and Oregon’s Robert Johnson were named National Coaches of the Year. Texas’ Mario Sategna and Kansas’ Wayne Pate are the National Assistant Coaches of the Year.

National Men’s Track Athlete of the Year
Lawi Lalang, Arizona

Lalang, a sophomore from Eldoret, Kenya, had one of the most noteworthy collegiate indoor seasons of all-time. In a total of five distance races, Lalang never lost to a collegian, set a new collegiate record in the 5000 meters, and won two NCAA titles.

At the NCAA Championships, Lalang scored the 3000-5000 double with titles in both events – the first to do so since Oregon’s Galen Rupp in 2009. In the 5000, Lalang claimed a new NCAA-Championships record with a 13:25.11 run, clocking 28.09 in the final 200 meters, in holding off Stanford’s Chris Derrick. The next night, Lalang again held off Derrick and won the 3000 by a sixth-of-a-second in 7:46.64, just off the meet record of 7:46.03. Lalang closed the 3000 with laps of 28.60 and 27.28.

Earlier in the season, Lalang toppled the collegiate record in the 5000 meters by 10 seconds with a 13:08.28 run at the Millrose Games where he finished second only to professional Bernard Lagat.

Lalang also won the MPSF 3000-meter title in 7:44.48 (OT) and opened the season by winning the Razorback Invitational mile in 3:55.09, the third-fastest time in collegiate history.

Recent Winners:
2012: Lawi Lalang, Arizona
2011: Miles Batty, BYU
2010: Torrin Lawrence, Georgia
2009: Galen Rupp, Oregon
2008: Leo Manzano, Texas
2007: Chris Solinsky, Wisconsin
2006: Xavier Carter, LSU

 

National Men’s Field Athlete of the Year
Curtis Beach, Duke

Beach, a junior from Albuquerque, N.M., was the indoor season’s NCAA and ACC Champion of the heptathlon. With a score of 6,183 points in the event at the national championships, Beach became the third-best performer in the collegiate history of the event. Beach sits only behind world-record holder Ashton Eaton (Oregon) and Olympic medalist and two-time World Champion Trey Hardee (Texas) on the all-time list.

Also at the NCAA Championships, Beach reset his own heptathlon world record by four seconds in the 1000 meters with a run of 2:23.63 to secure overall victory. The time also placed him in the collegiate top ten of the open 1000 for the season.

Beach won the ACC title in the heptathlon by nearly 600 points with a score of 5,862.

Recent Winners:
2012: Curtis Beach, Duke
2011: Derek Drouin, Indiana
2010: Ashton Eaton, Oregon
2009: Ashton Eaton, Oregon
2008: Ryan Whiting, Arizona State
2007: Donovan Kilmartin, Texas /
Donald Thomas, Auburn
2006: Trey Hardee, Texas

 

National Men’s Coach of the Year
Mike Holloway, Florida

Holloway, in his tenth year at the helm at Florida, guided the Gators to their third-straight NCAA Indoor Track & Field team title this season. Florida held off SEC rival Arkansas for the 2012 national crown, scoring 52 points to the 49 posted by the Razorbacks. The Gators joined Arkansas and UTEP as the only teams to have won at least three consecutive national indoor crowns.

Florida won three individual titles at the national meet. Jeff Demps won his third-straight crown at 60 meters, Tony McQuay was national champ of the 400, and Omar Craddock claimed victory in the triple jump.

The Gators finished runner-up at the SEC Indoor Championships.

Recent Winners:
2012: Mike Holloway, Florida
2011: Mike Holloway, Florida
2010: Mike Holloway, Florida
2009: Dan Steele, Oregon
2008: Greg Kraft, Arizona State
2007: Ed Nuttycombe, Wisconsin

 

National Men’s Assistant Coach of the Year
Mario Sategna, Texas

Sategna guided Texas to a seventh-place national team finish as the Longhorns scored all of their 22½ team points in field events that he coaches. Texas went 2-5 in the shot put with Jacob Thormaehlen and Ryan Crouser. Marquise Goodwin added a third-place national showing in the long jump, Maston Wallace was sixth in the pole vault, and freshman Petter Olson was seventh in the heptathlon.

In addition, five individuals won Big 12 titles under Sategna’s tutelage and scored 93 of 133 Longhorn team points at the conference meet. Sategna is in his ninth year at Texas.

 Recent Winners:
2012: Mario Sategna, Texas
2011: Dick Booth, Florida
2010: David Dumble, Arizona State
2009: Brian O’Neal, Florida
2008: Jason Vigilante, Texas

 

National Women’s Track Athlete of the Year
Diamond Dixon, Kansas

Dixon, a sophomore from Houston, Texas, led Kansas to a runner-up team finish – the best in team history – at the NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships with a national crown in the 400 meters and anchor-leg run of the Jayhawks’ third-place finishing 4×400 relay (3:33.13). Dixon clocked a collegiate-leading 51.78 for victory in the 400 national final.

All told, it was an undefeated season for Dixon in races at the 400-meter distance as she also claimed a Big 12 crown in the event. Dixon also led the Jayhawks to a school record and all-time collegiate top-ten standing in the 4×400 in anchoring the squad to a collegiate-leading 3:31.36 for the Big 12 title.

Recent Winners:
2012: Diamond Dixon, Kansas
2011: Jordan Hasay, Oregon
2010: Francena McCorory, Hampton
2009: Jenny Barringer, Colorado
2008: Sally Kipyego, Texas Tech
2007: Kerron Stewart, Auburn
2006: Johanna Nilsson, Northern Arizona

 

National Women’s Field Athlete of the Year
Brianne Theisen, Oregon

Theisen, a senior from Humboldt, Saskatchewan, capped off her indoor season with a third-straight NCAA crown in the pentathlon (4,536). Theisen joined Arizona State’s Jacquelyn Johnson (2006-07-08) as a three-time champ in the event.

Earlier in the season at the Texas A&M Challenge in January, Theisen broke her own collegiate record in the event for the third time with a tally of 4,555. In that event’s high jump portion, Theisen cleared 6-2 (1.88m) in the high jump and finished the season tied for second among all collegians with that mark.

At the MPSF Championships, Theisen performed in individual events, scoring 22 points with a victory in the 400 meters, a second-place in the 60 hurdles, and fifth-place showing in the long jump.

Recent Winners:
2012: Brianne Theisen, Oregon
2011: Brianne Theisen, Oregon
2010: Blessing Okagbare, UTEP
2009: Destinee Hooker, Texas
2008: Jacquelyn Johnson, Arizona State
2007: Brittany Riley, Southern Illinois
2006: Chelsea Johnson, UCLA

 

Bev Kearney Award — National Women’s Coach of the Year
Robert Johnson, Oregon

Oregon claimed their third-straight NCAA indoor team title, scoring 49 points to best the field by 19. Oregon joins LSU as the only teams to have won three of more consecutive national indoor crowns. Oregon now has the third-most women’s NCAA indoor track & field titles in history (LSU, 11; Texas, 6).

Freshman English Gardner (60 meters) and Brianne Theisen (pentathlon) won national crowns. The Ducks had seven scoring performances at the national meet and entered with 12 entries.

Recent Winners:
2012: Robert Johnson, Oregon
2011: Robert Johnson, Oregon
2010: Vin Lananna, Oregon
2009: J.J. Clark, Tennessee
2008: Greg Kraft, Arizona State
2007: Greg Kraft, Arizona State                      

 

National Women’s Assistant Coach of the Year
Wayne Pate, Kansas

Pate’s field event athletes scored 14 of 30 team points, helping Kansas to a second-place national team finish – the best in school history – at the NCAA Championships. Junior Andrea Geubelle won the national crown in the triple jump with a collegiate-leading leap of 44-10¼ (13.67m). Geubelle also took eighth in the long jump and teammate Francine Simpson claimed sixth in the event.

Pate’s athletes scored 36 points, including a 1-2 finish in the long jump, at the Big 12 Championships helping KU place third. Pate is in his fifth year at Kansas.

Recent Winners:
2012: Wayne Pate, Kansas
2011: Vince Anderson, Texas A&M
2010: Robert Johnson, Oregon
2009: Vince Anderson, Texas A&M
2008: David Dumble, Arizona State