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USATF announces Nike Coach of the Year


INDIANAPOLIS -- The coaching duo of Heather Burroughs and Mark Wetmore has been honored as the 2014 Nike Coach of the Year, USATF announced Tuesday.

Together, Burroughs and Wetmore coached 2014 USATF Jackie Joyner-Kersee Female Athlete of the Year finalists Emma Coburn and Jenny Simpson, with Simpson winning the honor. The duo also coach the University of Colorado track & field and cross country programs, whose men’s team just captured its fourth consecutive Pac-12 Cross Country title and second straight NCAA Championship.

Simpson was named the 2014 USATF Jackie Joyner-Kersee Female Athlete of the Year, after a dream 2014 capturing the Diamond League title and the USATF Outdoor crown in the women’s 1,500 meters. Simpson’s 2014 USATF Outdoors title was her eighth overall national title. Simpson was the third-fastest woman in the world this year over 1,500 meters with her time of 3:57.22 in Paris.

Coburn also turned in an impressive 2014, breaking the American record in the 3,000-meter steeplechase at the Diamond League meeting in Glasgow. Coburn crossed in 9:11.42 to set a new personal best and take the AR. She was named USATF Athlete of the Week for her efforts.


Coburn broke Simpson’s previous American record of 9:12.50, set in 2009 at the World Championships in Berlin. She now holds the 11th fastest time in world history and also owns five of the six fastest U.S. times ever, and seven of the top 14.


The Olympian also won the 2014 USATF Outdoor title in the women’s 3,000-meter steeplechase, crossing in 9:19.72. Earlier in the year, Coburn captured the Diamond League meeting in Shanghai with a time of 9:19.80, a then-personal best. Coburn gapped the field on the first lap, built up a lead of over 12 seconds with 1,000 meters to go and defeated a field that included Olympians Sofia Assefa and Hiwot Ayalew. She also earned USATF Athlete of the Week for her win in Shanghai.

Wetmore and Burroughs will be honored Thursday evening at USATF's Jesse Owens Awards and Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony. The event is part of USATF's Annual Meeting held at the Anaheim Hilton.


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