One key to building a productive athletic team is to have continuity of coaching. The University of Arizona was fortunate to have such consistency in longtime coach Dave Murray. Murray coached at the Division I institution for 35 years beginning his career in 1967 as a graduate assistant for the Wildcats and earning the position of Director of Cross Country/Track & Field in 1990.
Murray, who retired following the 2001-2002 track and field season, was one of the longest tenured coaches in Arizona history. Only two other coaches in history at Arizona held positions longer than Murray. During that time Murray build Arizona into one of the top cross country and track and field programs in the nation coaching numerous All-Americans, NCAA and Pac-10 Conference champions, World Championship competitors, and Olympians.
He was honored by the Pac-10 as the Men’s Cross Country Coach of Year eight times throughout his career and was the 1984 NCAA Men’s Cross Country National Coach of the Year. Murray was also honored as the District VIII/West Region Coach of the Year six times.
Recognized as one of the most distinguished coaches in any sport at the University of Arizona, Murray is a member of the Drake Relays Hall of Fame, the Mt. Sac Relays Hall of Fame, and also the University of Arizona Hall of Fame. He was also inducted into the Pima County Sports Hall of Fame in 1997, and also the University of Arizona Kappa Sigma Fraternity Hall of Fame in 1998.
During his career, Murray was actively involved with the NCAA community serving as the President of the Division I Cross Country Coaches Association from 1988-1990, and as president of the women’s cross country coaches association from 1981-1982. He also served as a member of the NCAA Executive Committee and as a District VIII representative.