Sept. 8, 2008
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IOWA CITY, IOWA — The University of Iowa men and women’s track programs will combine operations, UI Associate Athletic Director Paula Jantz recently announced. Larry Wieczorek will remain as the head coach of the men’s program and Layne Anderson will remain head coach for the women. Other coaching and administrative duties will be shared among the two coaching staffs.
“My staff and I have spent numerous hours looking at best practices across the country and whether or not this model made sense at Iowa. I’m convinced this is the best way for us to maximize our ability to compete for championships in the future,” said University of Iowa Director of Athletics Gary Barta. “We have excellent coaches, which makes the transition much easier. Our goal remains to have one of the best track and field programs in the country academically and athletically.”
With approximately 110 student-athletes across the two programs and only six full-time coaches, this consolidation allows the student-athletes to work directly with the most knowledgeable and qualified coach in his/her event area(s).
“We spent the better part of a year researching this process, both within the Big Ten and at the NCAA level and came to the conclusion that the combining of operations between our two programs was in the best interest of our student-athletes,” explained Jantz. “This consolidation will enable our program to capitalize on the strengths of our coaches and to have those coaches working in their area(s) of expertise within both programs.”
Wieczorek and Anderson will continue to coach the men’s and women’s distance events, in addition to coordinating the administrative efforts of the program. From the men’s program Joey Woody will oversee the men’s sprints, short hurdles and relays, and women’s long sprints and hurdles. Scott Cappos will take over as the throws coach for both programs. On the women’s side Clive Roberts will oversee the women’s short sprints, relays and hurdles, as well and the horizontal jumps for both groups. Christi Smith will direct the multi-events and vertical jumps for the combined program.
“The two programs have really worked hard the past couple years to unite. This consolidation will allow us to coordinate resources in the future,” said Anderson, who is in his sixth year at Iowa. “We appreciate the support of the administration toward this goal and look forward to a productive partnership.”
While the two programs will maintain separate budgets, the teams will share administrative responsibilities and will coordinate competition schedules, thereby allowing them to coordinate recruiting, transportation and housing needs throughout the year.
“This consolidation really gives us the best of both worlds,” said Wieczorek, is in his 22nd season with the Hawkeyes. “It allows us to pool our coaching and administrative resources to give our student-athletes the best opportunities to succeed.”