KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — J.J. Clark, who led the Lady Volunteers to a pair of NCAA National Championships and six Southeastern Conference titles during his seven seasons as head coach, has been chosen to lead a combined men’s and women’s track & field/cross country program at the University of Tennessee, Director of Men’s Athletics Mike Hamilton and Director of Women’s Athletics Joan Cronan announced jointly on Monday.
“It’s a great honor to be entrusted with the combined men’s and women’s track & field program at the University of Tennessee,” Clark said. “I have great respect for the tradition of the men’s program at UT. I recognize the responsibility associated with leading this program. We intend to compete for championships.”
Clark will assume the title of Director of Track & Field immediately and begin assembling his staff. He takes the reins of one of the most storied collegiate track & field programs in the nation. Combining women’s and men’s achievements, Tennessee has won seven national championships and claimed 51 SEC titles (22 indoors/29 outdoors) in track & field through the years. The women’s program most recently added to those gaudy numbers when it captured NCAA and SEC Indoor trophies during the 2009 campaign.
The Vols and Lady Vols have been big contributors when it comes to producing track & field Olympians. A total of 36 Tennessee competitors have represented various countries at the Games, including gold medalists Benita Fitzgerald, Justin Gatlin, Tim Mack, Sam Graddy and DeeDee Trotter; silver medalists Gatlin, Graddy, Lawrence Johnson and LaVonna Martin; and bronze medalist Gatlin. In 2008, Clark served as the women’s middle distance coach for Team USA at the Beijing Olympiad, joining former UT skippers Stan Huntsman, Terry Crawford and Dorothy Doolittle as members of previous U.S. staffs.... read the rest of the story by Subscribing now.