Aug. 24, 2006
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Kevin Mannon was named assistant coach for Ohio State men’s track and field Thursday, in an announcement made by head coach Robert Gary. Mannon served as men’s and women’s throws coach at Ohio State for the past two seasons and will handle those disciplines with the men’s team.
Last season, Mannon guided three Buckeyes to All-America honors and posted a pair of Big Ten champions. He helped guide sophomore Lenny Jatsek to the league title in the weight throw indoors and to All-America status in the event at the NCAA meet. Mannon also mentored Ohio State Big Ten Medal of Honor winner Keturah Lofton back to All-American form after missing the 2005 season because of injury. Lofton won the Big Ten title in the weight and also joined Jatsek on the All-American podium.
In his two seasons in the volunteer role (2003-04), Mannon, a native of West Jeffereson, Ohio, helped put together one of the top throws teams in the nation. In his two volunteer seasons, Buckeye throwers earned 13 All-America awards, eight Big Ten titles and two NCAA crowns.
As volunteer coach, Mannon’s main focus was the weight throw indoors and the hammer event outdoors, where he helped Dan Taylor and Lofton reach new levels in the Big Ten and at the NCAA meets, culminating in Ohio State sweeps of the weight and hammer at both the indoor and outdoor Big Ten championships. In addition, Taylor was the NCAA champion in the weight and indoor shot put in 2004 and an All-American in the outdoor discus, hammer and shot put the last two seasons. Lofton earned All-America honors in the weight and hammer in 2004. Taylor holds the Big Ten record in the hammer, Lofton is the OSU record-holder.
As an athlete, Mannon was a 12-time All-American between two-year stints at South Carolina and Wyoming. He was the recipient of the Southeastern Conference Commissioner’s Trophy his sophomore season at South Carolina after winning performances at the 1998 outdoor conference meet.
Mannon established the American collegiate record in the weight throw on two occasions in the 1999 indoor season, setting a standard of 74 feet, 8 1/4 inches. The mark stood until Jan. 10, 2004, when Taylor heaved a measure of 76-2 1/4. Mannon was present that day to witness the record-setting throw and later helped Taylor set the record two more times, the last reaching 78-9 1/4 on Feb. 21.
Mannon also served as a graduate assistant at Wyoming for one season. In that time, he helped three Cowboys earn trips to the 2000 Olympic Games. Mannon, who placed fifth at the 2000 Olympic trials in the hammer, helped Dawn Ellerbe and Jesseca Cross make the U.S. team in the hammer, while also helping Jason Gervais earn a spot on the 2000 Canadian Olympic squad.