2019 NCAA DII Cross Country National Awards

NEW ORLEANS – National Athletes and Coaches of the Year for the 2019 NCAA Division II Cross Country season were announced on Tuesday by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) following the conclusion of the national championship meet.

USTFCCCA National Award History: Athletes of the Year | Coaches of the Year

Awards were voted on by member coaches based on results from both the postseason and during the regular season.

Scroll below to find out more about each of our winners.

USTFCCCA National Awards are presented by Pro Form Sports.

Doug Watts Award

Men’s National Athlete of the Year

Ezra Mutai, American International

Mutai, a freshman from Eldoret, Kenya, capped an undefeated season at the NCAA DII Cross Country Championships when he won the individual title in 29:31.2. He pulled away late to become the first freshman to win the national title since Alfred Chelanga of Shorter in 2015. Mutai also won individual titles at the East Region Championships, the Northeast-10 Cross Country Championships, the NEICAAA Cross Country Championships as well as at the 18th Annual Ted Owen Cross Country Invitational.

Doris Brown Heritage Award

Women’s National Athlete of the Year

Stephanie Cotter, Adams State

Cotter, a sophomore from Cork, Ireland, only raced three times this season but made each of them count, none more so than at the NCAA DII Cross Country Championships this past weekend. It was in Sacramento, California, where Cotter covered the 6K tract in 19:15.5 and became the first woman in NCAA DII history to break the 20-minute barrier at the national meet. Cotter also won individual titles at the South Central Region Championships as well as at the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Cross Country Championships.

Joe Vigil Award

Men’s National Coach of the Year

Chris Siemers, Colorado School of Mines

Siemers, in his eighth year as head coach, led the Orediggers to the team title at the NCAA DII Cross Country Championships with 57 points, 79 points ahead of runner-up Adams State for what was the largest margin of victory at the meet since 1978. Colorado Mines placed all five of its scorers in the top-20 as no other squad has more than two. The Orediggers also won the South Central Region Championships, Rocky Mountain Conference Championships, Fort Hays State Tiger Open and UC-Colorado Springs Rust Buster. 

Duane Vandenbusche Award

Women’s National Coach of the Year

Damon Martin, Adams State

Martin, in his 31st year as head coach, led the Grizzlies to the team title at the NCAA DII Cross Country Championships with a record-equalling low score of 23 points as the squad went 1-2-3 and placed all five scorers in the top-13. Adams State also won team titles at the South Central Region Championships, Rocky Mountain Conference Championships, Colorado College Invitational and Joe Vigil Open.