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March 21, 2013

Dr. Jack Daniels Named Head Cross Country Coach At Wells College

AURORA, N.Y. – Wells College has hired Dr. Jack Daniels to serve as the Head Coach for the men's and women's cross country programs, Director of Athletics Michael Borsz announced Thursday afternoon. Daniels replaces Julie Bailey, the four-year Head Coach of the Express who recently accepted the head coaching job at William Smith College in Geneva, N.Y.

Daniels comes to Aurora to continue his lengthy coaching career - most recently, Daniels served as the Head Coach for the Center for High Altitude Training on the campus of Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, Ariz. The facility was one of only 10 facilities in the nation specifically designated as an official United States Olympic training site, serving athletes from around the world by providing comprehensive, world-class support services and educational opportunities for altitude training.

No stranger to the region, Daniels served as the Men's and Women's Track and Field/Cross Country Coach at the State University of New York at Cortland for 17 years while also serving as a Physical Education professor for the college. Across his legendary coaching career with the Red Dragons, Daniels has coached 30 individual Division III NCAA National Champions, eight NCAA National Team Champions and 130 All-Americans.

"We are pleased to add a coach of [Daniels'] caliber to our athletics staff," said Borsz. "His proven ability to maximize the talent of his athletes paired with his successes at the regional, national and international levels will make him a great asset to our cross country programs."

Dubbed "The World's Best Coach" by Runner's World magazine, Daniels was the recipient of the Division III Women's Coach of the Century honor, bestowed by the NCAA in recognition of his extensive coaching resume. Daniels also is a three-time winner of NCAA National Coach of the Year honors. Outside of the collegiate arena, Daniels has coached five female and two male Olympians in distance events. Additionally, Daniels has also coached a female Olympian in the Modern Pentathlon.

Daniels has also penned four books on running and over 50 articles in scientific journals, in addition to numerous articles in popular magazines. Daniels' Running Formula, in its third edition, is set to be published in 2013. His expertise has also served him as a featured speaker at national and international coaching clinics, running camps and training symposia. Daniels is also the namesake for the "Daniels Valve", utilized in numerous exercise physiology laboratories around the world.

A mainstay at numerous national cross country championships, Daniels has served as a Meet Director at 25 conference championships and annual invitationals in both cross country and track and field. Serving as an Altitude consultant to the United States Olympic Team, he has also served as the Peruvian National Track Coach for one year.

Daniels was also a highly decorated athlete, still ranking as one of only three United States pentathletes to win two Olympic medals, both in the team event. He collected a silver medal as part of the United States Men's Modern Pentathlon team at the 1956 Summer Olympics in Melbourne, Australia and received a bronze medal with the same team at the 1960 Summer Olympics in Rome, Italy. In addition, Daniels collected one World Championship bronze medal in modern pentathlon.

A two-time United States National Champion and the first foreign winner of the Swedish National Championship in modern pentathlon, Daniels also served within the United States military as an Army officer. Daniels has been selected to numerous Hall of Fames, including at Sequoia High School, SUNY Cortland and Montana University.

Daniels, who currently resides in Flagstaff, Arizona, holds three degrees. After earning his Bachelor of Science in 1955 from the University of Montana in Physical Education and Mathematics, Daniels completed his Masters of Education from the University of Oklahoma at the University of Oklahoma in Physical Education and Exercise Physiology in 1965. Daniels earned his Ph.D. at the University of Wisconsin, Madison in Physical Education and Exercise Physiology in 1969. He has also earned a Certificate from the Royal Gymnastic Institute in Stockholm, Sweden in Sport & Exercise.

He will inherit a women's cross country program that most recently finished third within the North Eastern Athletic Conference and saw three different student-athletes earn placement on the league's All-Conference team. Additionally, the Express saw sophomore Emily Middlebrook (Newark, N.Y.) collect Runner of the Year honors for the second-straight season.

The Wells men's cross country program placed fifth overall this past October at the NEAC Championships in Abington Township, Pa., tying for their best finish in program history. Senior Brayden Shumski (Everett, Wash.) collected All-Conference runners for the fourth time this past year, becoming the first cross country runner in program history to accomplish that feat.

Since both the men's and women's cross country teams were introduced as Wells' 10th and 11th varsity sports offerings in 2005, both programs have combined to produce 15 All-Conference runners, two Runners of the Year, one Rookie of the Year and one Coach of the Year. A total of seven individual runners have also competed at the NCAA Atlantic Regional Championships.

Daniels is married to his wife, Nancy Jo, and has two daughters, Audra Marie and Sarah Tupper.

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