Head coach Orin Richburg enters his seventh season leading the cross country and track and field programs at NM State.
The cross country team continues its improvement under Richburg as Courtney Schultz qualified for the NCAA Championships and finished 59th, which was an improvement over her 88th overall finish in 2011.
The indoor track and field team also found success during the season and sent four athletes to compete at the USA Indoor Championships in Albuquerque, N.M. (March 1-3). This marked the first time the Aggies have qualified for the USA Indoor Championships under coach Richburg.
Junior Brianna Cromartie highlighted the season by being named WAC Athlete of the Year and was also the High Point champion for the WAC Indoor Championships (Feb. 21-23). Cromartie qualified to compete in the USA Indoor Championship in the 400m dash and finished fourth with a time of 54.59.
The Aggies found success in the outdoor season under Richburg as well, with five athletes qualifying for the NCAA Preliminary round in Austin, Texas (May 23-25). This was after the Aggies finished sixth in the 2013 WAC Outdoor Track and Field Championships (May 8-11), where Zoe Meade set a new all-time record in the heptathlon and Kelsey Brennan set a new record in the javelin.
In the 2013 indoor and outdoor seasons, coach Richburg’s track and field teams set or improved 83 records throughout the season. Richburg has developed a deep pool of talent for the Aggies as six of the nine athletes that qualified for the USA Indoor Championships and NCAA Preliminary Round were underclassmen.
One of the highlights of the 2011-12 season was the second place finishes by the men’s and women’s cross country teams at the Western Athletic Conference Championships. The track and field team finished third overall in the WAC Championships as well.
Senior Courtney Schultz placed first overall in the WAC Championships and qualified for her first NCAA Championships in 2011 with the help of Richburg’s coaching. Schultz ended up placing 88th overall in the event. Schultz was also named WAC Athlete of the Year for cross country with the assistance of Richburg.
Schultz, along with her sister Camille, were both named to the first team All-Conference. Then-freshman Tamara Lementino was selected to the second team All-Conference.
In track and field, Richburg helped his athletes break 36 school records during the indoor track and field season and 26 school records during the outdoor track and field season.
In the WAC Indoor Championships, eight NM State athletes were named to first team All-Conference and seven athletes were named to the second team All-Conference under Richburg’s watch. Nine NM State athletes were named to the first team All-Conference and four additional athletes were named to the second team All-Conference for the 2012 outdoor track and field season under Richburg’s coaching.
Senior LaSasha Aldredge was named WAC Athlete of the Week on three different occasions during the 2012 outdoor season with the help of Richburg’s coaching on sprinting events.
Richburg values academic success with his coaching philosophy. The cross country team was honored by being named to the USTFCCCA 2011 Division I Cross Country All-Academic Team list. The men’s and women’s team each ranked No. 2 in the WAC in GPA. Sixteen athletes from the indoor and outdoor track and field seasons were named as Academic All-WAC athletes.
Richburg also served as an assistant coach for the United States Track and Field Team at the World Indoor Championships in Istanbul, Turkey, March 9-11, 2012.
Richburg managed a coaching staff and a roster that produced 22 all-conference honors between the indoor and outdoor track and field seasons in 2011. Five athletes were named to first team All-WAC and three to second team All-WAC for the indoor season under Richburg’s coaching. Four athletes were named to first team All-WAC and seven to second team All-WAC in the outdoor season.
Richburg led NM State to a fifth-place finish in the WAC Indoor Championships with two separate individual first-place finishes by Aggies in events. He led the Aggies to a sixth-place finish in the WAC Outdoor Championships, including two NM State first-place finishes in individual events.
Richburg sent six athletes to the NCAA Championships in 2011. Richburg also helped Jndia Cleveland receive WAC Athlete of the Week honors on March 22 and March 29.
In the 2010-11 season, Richburg coached 30 All-WAC performers for the cross country, indoor and outdoor seasons. There were 11 first team All-WAC selections including Courtney Schultz who garnered two first team (cross country, outdoor 5,000m) and three second team (mile, distance medley relay, and indoor 3,000m) selections. Schultz was also selected as WAC Athlete of the Year and WAC Freshman of the Year.
Richburg also led the women’s cross country squad to their first ever WAC Championship, with the women finishing more than 40 points better than second-place Utah State.
Additionally, the Aggies broke five school records last season (indoor mile run, indoor 3,000m run, indoor 400m dash, distance medley relay, and outdoor 5,000m run).
In the summer of 2008, Richburg took the reigns as the head relay coach for the USA Track and Field Olympic team in Beijing, China. The USA relay team brought home a pair of gold medals in the women’s and men’s 4x400-meter relay.
Richburg was also the head relay coach for Team USA at the 2006 World Junior Championships in Beijing, China, and served as a relay coach for Team USA at the 2007 Pan American Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
After 16 years as head track and field coach at Washington, Richburg was elected by his peers to the prestigious post as the head coach of the United States at the 2001 World Track and Field Championships in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
As head coach, Richburg was responsible for setting relay teams and coordinating athlete activities at the meet. Richburg, a former collegiate sprinter himself, piloted the Americans to a meet-high 19 medals, including nine golds. His election as head coach reflected the high esteem in which he is held by USA Track and Field and his coaching peers around the country.
At Washington, Richburg and cross country coach Greg Metcalf helped the Huskies to a pair of top 5 finishes at the Pac-10 Cross Country Championships. Washington’s women’s squad advanced to the NCAAs for the fifth-consecutive season, placing 14th overall.
On the track in 2001, Richburg guided seven different Huskies to the NCAA Championships, including top 10 finishes from sprinter Ja’Warren Hooker and distance specialist David Bazzi that vaulted the Huskies to a 33rd-place finish.
The UW women placed 23rd at the 2000 NCAA cross country championships, and were 13th at the 1999 NCAA meet. On the track, the Huskies collected four individual Pac-10 titles, and Hooker was honored as the Men’s Pac-10 Athlete of the Year after sweeping titles in the 100-meter and 200-meter events.
The 1998-99 season brought the Huskies women’s cross country team its best finish ever at the NCAA Championships, a ninth-place effort, while the 1997-98 season saw Hooker capture the Huskies first NCAA sprint title with a win in the 55-meter dash at the NCAA Indoor Championships.
As evidenced by his selection to head the U.S. team in 2001, Richburg’s reach has extended beyond the collegiate ranks onto the national and international stage. Hooker was selected to represent the U.S. in the 4x400-meter relay unit at the 2000 Olympics, where he was joined by former Huskies U.S. discus thrower Adam Setliff and Swiss steeplechaser Christian Belz.
The 2001 World’s marked Richburg’s second appointment as National Team coach.
In 1997, Richburg received another prestigious coaching appointment. He was selected by USA Track and Field as the head coach for the U.S. National Team for the World Indoor Championship Meet in Paris, France.
Richburg was an assistant coach for the 1989 Junior Pan American team and also assisted with the United States National Team in its dual meet with Great Britain, March 14, 1994, in Birmingham, England.
Richburg was responsible for converting the Washington women’s track and field team into one of the best dual-meet squads in the country. The UW women’s team ranked among the top 10 dual-meet teams in the nation every year during the 1990s.
He has met with similar dual-meet success upon taking over the men’s program, with back-to-back unbeaten seasons in 1999 and 2000, going 13-0 in that span. Richburg’s 76 dual-meet victories as women’s head coach is the most in Washington history, more than doubling his closest rival.
Richburg led the Washington women to an impressive 76-30-1 dual-meet record. His 1988 UW squad finished 10th at the NCAA championship meet, the best national finish in the school’s history. His Husky women’s teams have produced 11 conference and two NCAA individual champions. From 1995-98, his track and field teams featured Aretha Hill, a four-time all-American who participated in the discus at the 1996 Summer Olympic Games, placing 34th.
Richburg guided the Washington women’s team to the 1996 Mountain Pacific Sports Federation indoor championship and was named conference and regional coach of the year for his efforts. In 1988, Richburg was also named District VIII Indoor Women’s Coach of the Year.
Prior to Washington, Richburg spent seven seasons at Kent State, earning Mid-American Conference (MAC) Coach of the Year accolades in 1980. He directed the men’s team to a third-place conference finish in 1984, the school’s best team finish since 1979. Richburg also recruited and coached two-time 100 and 200-meter MAC champion Thomas Jefferson. Jefferson went on to win the bronze medal in the 200-meter dash at the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles.
A fine athlete in his own right, Richburg earned all-America accolades as a sprinter at Kent State. He finished sixth in the 200-yard dash at the 1967 NCAA championships and still holds the Kent State indoor record for the 440-yard dash and the outdoor records for the 220- and 440- yard dashes. In addition, Richburg captained the 1969 track team.
Richburg also played football at Kent State, earning three varsity letters and setting records for the second-longest kickoff return in school history (a 98-yarder against Buffalo in 1967).
A 1970 graduate of Kent State, Richburg earned his bachelor’s degree in health and physical education. He later earned his master’s in education from Western Michigan, where he was also an assistant track coach for three years.
Richburg and his wife, Telva, are the parents of two and have two grandchildren.
|Alma Mater:||Kent State|