Sept. 29, 2010
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Notre Dame head track and field coach Joe Piane announced recently the addition of Alan Turner to the Irish coaching staff. Turner replaces longtime sprint coach John Millar, who was named director of track and field and cross country at Wake Forest last month.
“We are very happy and excited to welcome Alan to our program,” Piane says. “I was fortunate to watch him compete the highest level, nationally, while he was at Indiana. He was such a spirited competitor and is now a spirited coach. We look forward to him bringing that kind of spirit and enthusiasm to our program.”
Turner’s recent coaching accomplishments as an assistant at Southern Illinois are quite evident through the achievements of student-athletes which he has mentored: 17 Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) Champions, 25 MVC runner-ups, 65 all-MVC performances, 25 NCAA Regional qualifiers, 1 USATF Junior National Champion and 11 USATF Junior National qualifiers.
“Notre Dame is such a unique and special place with high standards of excellence and great tradition,” Turner says. “I feel very honored and blessed to be here. I’m ready to hit the ground running and start working with the student-athletes.”
Turner, regarded by many as the top sprint coach in the Missouri Valley Conference throughout his last five seasons at Southern Illinois, steered the sprint and hurdle corps to three school records and five Missouri Valley individual titles in 2009-10.
In 2009, Turner mentored sprinter Meredith Hayes who captured both the 60-meter hurdles (indoor) and 100-meter hurdles (outdoor) titles at the respective MVC league meets.
His athletes yielded 19 all-MVC accolades in 2008 along with six MVC titles and eight NCAA Mid-East Regional invitations
In Turner’s first season with the Salukis he directed the efforts of Felix Anderson, who was the high-point scorer on the track at the 2006 MVC Indoor Championships. Anderson won the 400-meters and took runner-up in the 200-meters. Anderson won the outdoor 200-meters title and was a regional qualifier in the 200-meters, 400-meters and 4×100-meter events.
Before arriving at Southern Illinois, Turner spent two years at Proviso East High School (Maywood, Ill.) as an assistant coach in the sprints and horizontal jumps. While at Proviso East he coached one Junior National Champion, three Junior National qualifiers, two Illinois High School Association (IHSA) state champions, three all-state honorees and six sectional champions. Three of his athletes from the 2004 team received Division I track scholarships.
Prior to Proviso East, Turner assisted triple jumper Kamau Sullivan in qualifying for the USATF Nationals in 1993 and 1994, as a member of the Nike Indiana Track Club.
Turner knows a few things about being a student-athlete in a high-caliber program. A 1992 graduate of Indiana, Turner was a three-time All-American for the Hoosiers. He won five Big Ten titles (two long jump, two 400-meters and one 4×400-meter relay) and was a three-time team captain while leading Indiana to five straight Big Ten Conference team titles. In 1991, he won the NCAA indoor long jump title and was runner-up at the NCAA outdoor championships. He also qualified for the NCAA Championships in the 400-meters and 4×100-meter relay. Over 18 years since accomplishing the feat, Turner still holds the Indiana records in the outdoor long jump and 4x100m relay.
Outside of collegiate competition, Turner finished in the top-eight in the long jump at the USA Outdoor Championships four times. He was a member of five U.S. National teams and even won the gold medal at the 1991 World University Games in the long jump.
A native of North Chicago, Ill., Turner earned a bachelor’s degree in public finance from Indiana. Professionally, Turner has worked as a trading assistant with Conseco Capital Management (Carmel, Ind.) and as a portfolio manager with First Chicago and Bank One (Chicago, Ill.)