Helmer Completes IU Track and Field Staff
July 23, 2007
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - First year Indiana Director and Head Coach of Men's and Women's Cross Country and Track and Field Ron Helmer has announced the hiring of five to his staff, including an associate head coach and four assistant coaches.
Huntoon's credentials include coaching an Olympic Gold medalist, four Olympians and nine Olympic trials qualifiers. He has mentored 44 All-Americans and 83 national qualifiers. Under his tutelage, West Virginia has won two NCAA individual championships, 75 individual conference championships and has set more than 90 school records.
A 1988 graduate of Northern Colorado and native of Kenosha, Wis., Huntoon is the UNC school-record holder in the 110-meter high hurdles and in the 500-meter run.
"I have competed against Jeff in the BIG EAST for a long time," Helmer said. "I watched the energy that he takes to the job and the way he interacts with student-athletes. I have always been impressed with his desire to win. A big plus to hiring Jeff is that he has six years of head coaching experience, so he knows the administrative aspects of this job that can be time consuming. Having someone like Jeff who is in tune with that side of the position and can see the big picture of where we want to take this program is just a huge asset."
The Fort Wayne, Ind., native was the head men's coach at Ball State during the 2003 season where he coached All-American Zac Riley, who finished in 10th place in the hammer throw at the 2004 Olympic Trials.
"Jermaine came very highly recommended by some of my peers that I trust a lot," Helmer said. "He is tremendous as both a developing coach and as a person. He has Indiana roots and he knows IU and the potential of IU track and field. He is just so enthusiastic about coming to Bloomington and trying to make his mark as a part of what we are building here."
Hargrove was a three-time All-American while running at Georgetown between 2001-04 under Helmer's direction. She received her All-America distinction as a member of the Hoyas' distance medley relay team in 2002, 2003 and 2004. The New Haven, Conn., native was also the 2003 BIG EAST indoor 500-meter champion and was a component in the 2002 BIG EAST outdoor 4x400-meter relay champion squad, clocking a 51.9 relay split.
"I began recruiting Monica when she was 16 and got to see and help develop her into an outstanding athlete at Georgetown," Helmer said. "She became a team captain and then worked as a volunteer assistant while she was working at a school for troubled children. We had an opportunity to get her on staff full-time. She brings a lot to this program. Monica is still a very competitive athlete and is a very curious student of the sport so she is constantly interacting with some of the best athletes in the world. She also compliments the big picture philosophy. At Georgetown, she was not only recruiting quartermilers and sprinters, but was recruiting all middle and distance runners. She is definitely a rising star in this profession."
Wiseman can be found in the Indiana record books with his career-best mark in the javelin (63.89m/209-10) ranking third, and his 7,365 points in the decathlon ranking second all-time.
"Every coach and administrator that I talked to at IU said that Jake Wiseman was an asset to this staff," Helmer said. "He has done an impressive job with how he has worked his way through the recent changes. I was also impressed with what Jake did with his young vaulters. I got to watch him work with his athletes at the NCAA meet and I was impressed with how he interacted with them. I felt a very positive vibe from him and for his feelings of IU. Jake is embracing the changes and wants to be a part of where we are taking the program."
Walter spent the 2006 cross country season as a volunteer assistant coach at Georgetown under Helmer, and was instrumental in helping the Hoyas women's cross country team finish 16th at last season's NCAA Championships.
"Rebecca worked with me at Georgetown and at some of our camps," Helmer said. "This past year, she worked with me as a volunteer assistant during the cross country season. Her ability to interact with the athletes, supporting their needs while supporting and interacting with me and the rest of the staff, was very impressive. She wants to learn and to be a part of the team. Rebecca is a very bright and talented individual who will be a positive force on the staff. I immediately thought of her as someone that could make me better and someone I could help grow and develop as a distance coach."
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