COLUMBUS, Ohio – Sophomore All-American Thomas Murdaugh, head coach Robert Gary and associate head coach Ed Beathea were honored by the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) Tuesday for their outstanding accomplishments during the 2010 indoor track and field season.
Murdaugh, the Buckeyes’ 400m star, was named Great Lakes Track Athlete of the Year, the first member of the men’s track team to earn an AOY award since Dan Taylor in 2004. The Dublin, Ohio native continued his dominance of the track and field award season by collecting his third major award in the span of a week – he was named Big Ten Track Athlete of the Year and Athlete of the Championships last Tuesday after helping the Buckeyes to a second-place finish at the indoor championships.
A look at some of the sophomore’s accomplishments so far this season:
Head coach Robert Gary was honored as the USTFCCCA Great Lakes Coach of the Year, the first COY award of his career. In his fourth year as head coach of the Buckeyes, Gary continues to lead the men’s track and field program to unprecedented heights. A year after guiding Ohio State to a runner-up finish on its home track at the 2009 Big Ten Outdoor Championships, Gary engineered a second-place finish at the conference indoor championships Feb 28, the highest finish for the program since 1996.
A former Olympian and member of the Ohio State Athletics Hall of Fame, Gary has established himself as one of the nation’s top distance coaches. Under his leadership, senior Jeff See and junior Daniel White qualified for the upcoming NCAA Indoor Championships, with See also claiming a Big Ten individual title in the 3000m. Professionally, Gary is well respected throughout the U.S. track and field and cross country community. In 2008, he was selected to be an assistant coach for Team USA’s U-23 team in July 2008 at the North America, Central America and Caribbean Athletic Association (NACAC) meet in Toluca, Mexico. He has also served as chair of the U.S. developmental committee for the steeplechase, 5000m and 10000m since 2006, and has been a presenter at several national track and field events.
Associate head coach Ed Beathea was named the Great Lakes Assistant Coach of the Year based largely on his work with Murdaugh and the Buckeyes’ 4x400m relay team. Possessing an uncanny eye for talent, Beathea, a noted sprint/hurdles coach, has mentored Murdaugh to All-American status and created a juggernaut in the three-time defending Big Ten champion 4x400m team. Prior to his arrival in Columbus, Beathea spent a decade with the Indiana track and field program, where he coached 32 Big Ten champions, 28 All-Americans and two NCAA runners-up.
Murdaugh, Gary and Beathea, along with See, Daniel White and Matt DeChant, will be in Fayetteville, Ark., to represent the Buckeyes at the NCAA Indoor Championships March 12-13.