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May 26, 2010

2009-2010 Season - Olsen wins Midwest Region's "Coach of the Year"

Paul Olsen led the men's track & field team to the CCIW title for the second time in the past three years. He was named the Midwest Region's "Coach of the Year" by the USTFCCCA.

Although the season is not yet finished, Paul Olsen has been honored by the United States Track & Field/Cross Country Coaches Association as the Midwest Region’s “Coach of the Year” in NCAA Division III. This is the second time in the last three years that Olsen has earned this honor in a vote of his peers. In 2008, not only was he the Midwest Region’s “Coach of the Year”, but he was also the NCAA Division III national “Coach of the Year”.

It has been a tremendous season for Olsen and his Vikings. They won the College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin championship on May 8 in Wheaton, Illinois, coming from 70 points down on the second day to nip North Central by just two points (262-260). Augustana led just one time in the meet and that was after the last event had been contested and it was the second CCIW title in the last three seasons for the Vikings.

Currently Olsen has his team ranked third in the USTFCCCA national dual meet rankings. The Vikings have 222.03 points and trail only Wisconsin-Oshkosh (223.92) and North Central (222.63).

During the course of the 2010 season, Augustana won four meets and placed second in three others. The Blue & Gold won the Early Spring Opener on March 19, the Viking Olympics on March 27, the Meet of Champions on April 17 and the CCIW Championship on May 8. The Vikings were second in the Wartburg Select on April 3, the Lee Calhoun Memorial on April 10 and the Fighting Scot Invitational on May 1.

Heading into the NCAA Division III national meet, which will be held May 27-29 in Berea, Ohio, a grand total of 12 individuals and two relay teams met the national qualifying standard throughout the season.

Olsen has been the head cross country coach at Augustana since 1966 (44 seasons) and the head track & field coach since 1969 (42 seasons). During that time both programs have been synonymous with success. In cross country his team has won two league titles (1969 & 1970), finished second 28 times and made a total of 25 NCAA Division III national meet appearances. His 1980 team placed second in the nation and his 1979 squad was fourth. He has had 11 cross country teams finish in the top 10 in the national meet.

His track & field teams have won 12 CCIW titles; including two in the last three years, finished second 28 times and have finished as low as third in the conference just twice. His 1975 team and his 1981 unit were both second in the NCAA Division III national meet and he has had a total of 16 teams finish in the top 10 (indoor & outdoor) in national competition.

Olsen, who is a also a highly sought-after-teacher in the Augustana English Department, is a member of the Illinois Track & Field Coaches Association, Augustana Tribe of Vikings and Luther Athletic Department Halls of Fame. The native of Onamia, Minnesota has both his M.A. and Ph.D. in English from the University of Oregon. During the 2009 season he was further honored at Augustana by having the track at Ericson Field renamed in his honor as the “Paul V. Olsen Track”.

AUGUSTANA ATHLETES WHO MET THE NCAA DIVISION III QUALIFYING STANDARD IN 2010

100 – Alex Rindone (Marmion Academy, Geneva, Ill.) :10.71 @ CCIW on 05/08

400 – Greg Patton (Bloomington HS, Bloomington, Ill.) :48.54 @ Meet of Champions on 04/17

110 HH – Greg Davis (Carlinville HS, Carlinville, Ill.) :14.86 @ Meet of Champions on 04/17

400 IH – Davis :53.94 @ Meet of Champions on 04/17

3000 STEEPLECHASE – Billy Wisser (Hersey HS, Mt. Prospect, Ill.) :9:21.67 @ Dr. Keeler Invitational on 05/14

10,000 – Matt Bowman (Geneva HS, Geneva, Ill.) 30:58.94 @ Meet of Champions on 04/17

TRIPLE JUMP – Patrick Zeunik (Bloomington Central Catholic HS, Bloomington, Ill.) 48’ 2” @ Wartburg Select on 04/02

HAMMER THROW – Darin Decker (Moline HS, Moline, Ill.) 184’ 10” @ Twilight Qualifier on 05/21

SHOT – Decker 52’ 8 ¾” @ CCIW on 05/08

DISC – Phil Christenson (Kaneland HS, Maple Park, Ill.) 172’ 11” @ Viking Olympics on 03/27

DISC – Patrick Hoefle (Lena-Winslow HS, Lena, Ill.) 162’ 3” @ Twilight Qualifier on 05/21

DECATHLON – Alex Stake (Williamsville HS, Sherman, Ill.) 6,492 @ CCIW on 05/07-08

400 RELAY – Max Petersen (Mundelein HS, Mundelein, Ill.), Patton, James Wood (St. Charles North HS, St. Charles, Ill.), Rindone :41.78 @ Twilight Qualifier on 05/21

1600 RELAY – Davis, Patton, Matt Somers (Naperville Central HS, Naperville, Ill.), Nick Borchert (Ankeny HS, Ankeny, Iowa) 3:13.35 @ Drake Relays on 04/24

NCAA DIVISION III TRACK & FIELD DUAL MEET RANKINGS

As of May 26, 2010

RANK

SCHOOL

REGION

POINTS

1.

Wisconsin-Oshkosh

Midwest

223.92

2.

North Central

Midwest

222.63

3.

AUGUSTANA

MIDWEST

222.03

4.

Wisconsin-LaCrosse

Midwest

218.66

5.

Wisconsin-Eau Claire

Midwest

216.06

6.

Whitworth

West

212.63

7.

Williams

New England

210.30

8.

Willamette

West

204.96

9.

Bates

New England

203.84

10.

Claremont-McKenna-Harvey-Mudd-Scripps

West

202.30

11.

Tufts

New England

200.86

12.

Nebraska Wesleyan

Central

199.34

13.

Carthage

Midwest

198.34

14.

Emory

South

195.28

15.

St. John’s

Central

193.85

16.

Lynchburg

South

192.31

17.

Wisconsin-Platteville

Midwest

192.15

18.

St. Thomas

Central

191.85

19.

Salisbury

Mideast

919.66

20.

Washington

Midwest

190.23