Ryan Dall, head coach of the Javelina Track and Field team, brought home the Division II National Coach of the Year Award at the end of the 2017-18 Outdoor season.
Dall carries several honors in his career of coaching, but never one like this from the United States Track and Field and Cross-Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA).
“I was surprised [to receive the award] because I wasn’t Regional Coach of the Year and they normally pick from that category. I didn’t really think about getting the award, but I was thrilled. It’s great to be recognized, especially by the Association because those are my peers. The association is made up of all the coaches in the country,” Dall said.
After graduating from the University of Miami, he started coaching right away. He began his coaching journey at Florida International University and went to Duke University from there. Now he’s at 20 years of coaching with Texas A&M University-Kingsville.
The Men’s Track team dominated at the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Outdoor Championships on May 24. This title is said to be the main reason Dall was recognized for the coaching award.
“I think the obvious reason why I got the award was from the Men’s Team winning nationals. We had a dominating meet, so I think that’s what put me there. We didn’t win the conference meet and that could’ve been a letdown, but we just focused on moving forward. If you don’t win one meet that doesn’t mean you won’t win the other,” Dall said.
Dall’s colleagues speak positively about him.
“I’ve known Coach Dall for three years and it’s been great. He’s a great person to work for; you always know exactly where you stand with him. When [I] do well [he always says] to keep up the great work. I like and appreciate that as a coach. I’m glad he trusts me to do what he hired me to do,” said Throws Coach, Tim Miller.
Miller thinks there is no question if Dall deserves the award.
“You must understand where this program was and where it is [now]. I remember the first nationals I went to, there was one [athlete we took] there. To go from that to now renting a bus. How many teams can actually rent a bus at nationals? He had that vision that we [would] win [nationals] at some point,” Miller said.
His athletes trust his training and Dall trusts his athletes to execute what they practice at every meet.
“He works just as hard as any other coach. Just to show how even though we are a DII school, we have just as much talent as any other school,” said Lagae Brigance, a 400m runner and high jumper on the Javelina Track Team.
Dall and his team will start training on Sept. 9.