position Assistant Coach - Sprints/Hurdles
Alma Mater Ohio State '04
Former Buckeye great Joel Brown is in his fifth season as an assistant coach at Ohio State, where he works with the men’s and women’s sprinters and hurdlers and serves as one of the program’s recruiting coordinators.
Last indoor and outdoor season, the men’s team won Big Ten titles in both seasons. You can ask any coach or student-athlete and they will all tell you the same thing: that Coach Brown played a critical role in the achievement. It was the first time in 25 years that the men’s program had ever won a Big Ten Championship.
In 2017, Brown helped sprinters set three school records. The women’s 4x400m relay made history in March at the NCAA Indoor Championships. The quartet of Beatrice Hannan, Karrington Winters, Aliyah Barnes and Maggie Barrie became the first 4x400m relay squad in program history to be named First Team All-American’s with a sixth-place showing and school record-time of 3:31.23. That same exact foursome went on to earn First Team All-America accolades in June at the NCAA Outdoor Championships.
A member of that foursome, Winters set a school record of her own in the 600m run at the Big Ten Indoor Championships. Clocking a time of 1:27.60, Winters edged out fellow Buckeye Rachel Weber to earn her first individual Big Ten title and finish one-two for Ohio State.
The men’s 4x100m relay team of James Clark, Nick Gray, Duan Asemota and Deshawn Marshall ran the fastest time in school history at the NCAA Outdoor Championships with a clocking of 38.92 to earn a ninth-place finish and Second Team All-America honors. Half of the 4x100m relay (Marshall and Gray) teamed up with Asa Burke and Champ Page on the 4x400m relay unit to earn First Team All-American status after a seventh-place finish at the NCAA Outdoor Championships. Marshall earned a pair of Second Team All-America awards in both the 200m indoors and outdoors at the national meet.
During the 2016 season, freshman Nick Gray took Columbus by storm earning five All-America honors under Brown’s tutelage. Gray, a sprinter who hails from Pickerington, Ohio, earned three First Team All-America honors (indoor/outdoor 200m dash and outdoor 4x400m relay) and two Second Team All-America honors (100m dash and indoor 4x400m relay). At the 2016 Big Ten Indoor Championships, Gray took gold in the 200m dash with a personal-record time of 20.71 to set a Big Ten championship record. At the outdoor conference meet, Gray pulled off the electrifying double by winning the 100m dash (10.49) and 200m dash (20.54).
Ohio State produced two individual outdoor First Team All-Americans and the men’s 4x400m relay team earned First Team All-America accolades during the 2016 season. The aforementioned Gray excelled in the 200m dash and he helped the 4x400m relay team place seventh at the NCAA Championships; Jerry Jackson, Antonio Blanks and Champ Page were the other three members of the 4x400m relay squad.
Brown played a role in each of the three school records were set during the 2016 track season. At the Big Ten Indoor Championships, Aaliyah Barnes set a new-school standard in the 200m dash with a readout of 23.37 on her way to earning silver. Alexis Franklin initially set the school record in the 400m hurdles at the Big Ten Championships with a time of 55.66; she followed that up nearly two weeks later at the NCAA East Preliminaries to cut down her school record by nearly half a second with a time of 55.28 to qualify for the NCAA Championships.
The third and final school record broken was the women’s 4x400m relay. The foursome of Sonikqua Walker, Beatrice Hannan, Franklin and Karrington Winters blazed around the track at the Big Ten Indoor Championships to a silver finish in a school-record time of 3:32.88.
In his first season with the Buckeyes, Brown coached Donovan Robertson and Antonio Blanks to All-America honors. Robertson was a Second Team All-American and fourth-place Big Ten finisher in the 60-meter hurdles during the indoor season and an Honorable Mention All-American and B1G bronze medalist in the 110-meter hurdles outdoors. Blanks collected Honorable Mention All-America honors and a Big Ten bronze medal in the outdoor 400-meter hurdles. On the women’s side, Alexis Franklin earned a silver medal in the 400-meter hurdles and a bronze medal in the 100-meter hurdles during the outdoor season.
Brown, a three-time All-American for the Buckeyes from 2001-2004, was a volunteer assistant with the Ohio State women’s team for nine seasons prior to becoming a full-time assistant. He was a member of the Buckeye coaching staff for three Big Ten championships and helped a number of student-athletes to new personal bests, including two-time national champion Christina Manning and All-Americans Letecia Wright and Madison McNary.
A former professional runner for Adidas, Brown spent nine years ranked among the Top 15 athletes in the world in the 60-meter hurdles. As the U.S. indoor champion in the 60 hurdles in 2005, Brown placed sixth in the event at the 2005 World Championships. He is a two-time U.S. bronze medalist and was a member of a world-record shuttle hurdle relay at the 2008 Penn Relays with Aubrey Herring, David Oliver and Aries Merritt.
Brown was the 2004 NCAA Mideast regional champion in the 110-meter hurdles and a three-time Big Ten champion for the Buckeyes. He is the Ohio State-record holder in 110-meter hurdles (13.39) and a former record holder in the indoor 60-meter hurdles (7.77).
A native of Baltimore, Brown won three Maryland state titles in the 110-meter and 300-meter hurdles. He held the Maryland state record in the 300 hurdles at the end of his scholastic career and was a national champion in the 60-meter hurdles. His efforts helped Woodlawn High School to indoor and outdoor state titles in 1998.
Brown Coaching Career
2014-Present: Assistant Coach & Recruiting Coordinator, Ohio State
2005-14: Volunteer Coach, Ohio State