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Aug. 28, 2006

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Karen Dennis, Ohio State women’s track and field head coach, completed the assistant coaching staff Monday, naming Ron Davis distance coach and Qingyi Zheng field and multi-events coach. Davis comes to Ohio State from South Alabama and Zheng last coached at Michigan State.

Both Davis and Qingyi Zheng (SHIN-yee ZENG) have coached track and field for more than 30 years.

“I’m excited both Ron and Qingyi decided to join our staff,” Dennis said. “They have the experience to hit the ground running and provide quality coaching our student-athletes deserve. I am familiar with both coaches and I think they will add that extra ingredient to move our program in a winning direction.”

Davis, a former track and field and cross country head coach at New Orleans and Maryland-Eastern Shore, headed the South Alabama distance program the last four seasons and guided the Jaguars to new levels of success in both cross country and track. Last season, he mentored Vincent Rono to South Alabama’s first individual NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championship in the 1,500-meter run.

In the 2006 indoor season, South Alabama’s men’s distance team dominated the Sun Belt Conference championships, becoming the first unit in league history to sweep the 800m, mile, 3,000m, and 5,000m events. The men’s team also established six team records during the outdoor schedule.

Prior to his stint at USA, Davis directed the New Orleans women’s cross country program to a Sun Belt Championship in 2000, the first in school history.

Zheng previously coached with Dennis at UNLV from 1997-2002. He then directed field and multi-events at Michigan State until 2005.

During Zheng’s tenure at UNLV, the Lady Rebels finished second in the Mountain West Conference each of his last three seasons and eight individuals claimed league titles. Zheng also was an assistant coach on the 2001 U.S. Women’s Track and Field team for the World University Games in Beijing, China. Zheng returned to Beijing in August as jumps coach of the U.S. team at the 2006 World Junior Championships. Prior to his stint at UNLV, Zheng was a men’s assistant coach at the University of Idaho from 1993-97. While at Idaho, the Vandals won the Big Sky Outdoor Track and Field championship in 1995 and 1996, and the 1997 Big West Outdoor Track and Field championship.