Pickett, Janneh highlight Fred Harvey Invitational

Sophomore Jamila Janneh and senior Gabe Pickett were among the top finishers in the Fred Hardy Invitational in Richmond, Va., this weekend. Janneh broke a 28-year-old school record in the triple jump on Friday, while Pickett placed first among 30 competitors in the long jump on Saturday.

Coach Eric Mobley credited assistant coach Shameka Marshall for the jumping squad’s strong performances.

“It was wonderful,” Janneh said. “It was awesome. At first I didn’t know I broke the school record, I just knew I got the PR. I came over to high jump and Mobley was like, ‘You just broke the school record.'”

Pickett returned from injury last week, after sitting out for the entire indoor season.

“It’s great for him to be back competing,” Mobley said. “He placed very well as well and jumped really far. It’s good to see him back in stride and get him closer to where he left off.”

Looking toward the rest of the season, Mobley said he wants to see his teams perform better in the outdoor conference tournament than they did in the indoor tournament. This is the program’s first year in the American Athletic Conference.

“We want to have a better showing, we’re motivated not to have that feeling that we had during our indoor season,” Mobley said. “Our training has been stepping up. Our individual athletes have been getting after it in practice, and that’s where it starts.”



Track adds another assistant coach

Tamara Burns has been introduced as track & field’s latest hire, joining the staff full-time as an assistant working with the men’s and women’s throwing teams, coach Eric Mobley announced Monday.

Burns’ hire marks the third addition to the program’s staff in the last three weeks, joining sprint coach Marquese Stancil and distance coach James Snyder as newly appointed full-time hires for the 2013-14 season.

Burns will join Temple after spending six years as an assistant at St. Francis University in Loretto, Pa.

Prior to joining the St. Francis staff in 2007, Burns racked up several honors during a four-year throwing career at Virginia Tech University including All-American and All-Atlantic Coast Conference honors for both the weight and hammer throws in 2005 and 2006.

Cross country hires new coach

Temple cross country will once again introduce a new face in charge of leading the team as it gets set for a new season.

Track & field coach Eric Mobley announced Wednesday that Philadelphia-area native James Snyder is the program’s latest hire, taking the position of assistant cross country and track & field coach.

Although he will not be given the title of cross country head coach yet, Snyder will handle the day-to-day coaching responsibilities for the men’s and women’s cross country teams, as well as the distance teams come track & field season, per a Temple Athletic Communications press release.

Snyder was a multiple letter winner for George Mason’s cross country and track & field teams, and is a magna cum laude graduate in exercise science. He earned his master’s degree in exercise science from Appalachian State University while also serving as a graduate assistant with the school’s cross country and track & field programs for two years.

The Downingtown, Pa. native is coming off a season working for Florida State University’s cross country and track & field program as the operations assistant, handling various administrative duties such as planning team travel, managing equipment budgets and coordinating on-campus recruiting.

Snyder is currently a USA Track & Field level I and II endurance coach and was selected to participate in the first Coaches Mentorship Program held during the 2012 Olympic Track & Field Trials.

The press release also mentioned some of Snyder’s recent pursuits in researching sport science and distance runner performance. It said that Snyder has presented his findings before the American College of Sports Medicine and the National Strength & Conditioning Association and has circulated his findings in various publications.

Snyder will be the third Temple coach to handle the cross country coaching duties in three seasons despite being the first to not hold the official title as cross country head coach.

A 2013 schedule release for cross country is still pending.

An updated version of this story can be found here.

Former track star advances in track and field championships

On Friday, Travis Mahoney certainly proved he can perform on the big stage.

The former Temple cross country and track & field member advanced to the final of the 3,000-meter steeplechase in the USA Track and Field Championships in Des Moines, IO, crossing with a mark of 8:38.67 and a sixth place finish overall. Mahoney placed top-5 in his heat, giving him the nod for a spot in the final on Sunday.

After a four-plus year running career as a Temple standout, Mahoney took his talents to the national stage this past year, running for the NJ/NY track & field club and other various track & field events around the country.

Mahoney racked up numerous individual awards in a Temple jersey, including seven Atlantic-10 Conference individual championships, three A-10 three A-10 Outstanding Performer of the Year awards, Mid-Atlantic Athlete of the Year and three NCAA All-American titles.

The steeplechase final will represent Mahoney’s first crack at a USA track & field championship race, and will start Sunday at 4:55 p.m. ET

Bray resigns to take job at Pittsburgh

Adam Bray has resigned from his positions as head coach of the cross country team and assistant coach to the men’s and women’s track & field teams, coach Eric Mobley said Sunday.

Formerly the Owls’ distance coach, Bray left Temple after accepting a full-time distance coaching position with the University of Pittsburgh in January.

The position will remain vacated for the remainder of the spring season.

“He was only part-time here,” Mobley said. “I’m coaching them right now, and we’ll open the search up for the fall at the end of outdoor season.”

Bray’s departure marked the second distance coaching change in roughly four months for Mobley’s Owls after former distance coach Matt Jelley also left Temple for greener pastures in August, accepting a full-time distance coaching position with the University of Maryland.

“[The distance team] has undergone the most changes with losing their coach in the fall and losing another coach in the middle of the indoor season,” Mobley said. “They’ve done very well with the coaching changes. They’ve really gotten together and focused on the running and not worrying about the stuff that was outside of their control. “

-Andrew Parent

Track and field head to Boston

The men’s and women’s track and field teams will be heading to Boston University for the ECAC/IC4A Championships, which will begin on Friday and conclude Sunday evening.

On Saturday, the women and men will get their first chance to showcase their talents.  In the morning, the men will compete in the triple jump trials, and then later in the finals if they qualify.

The men will also be featured in the 1 mile, high jump, 400m, 5000m-selection and 4 x 400m trials.

In the evening, the women will compete in three events; 20 Wt. Throw, 400m and 800m trials.

The 20 Wt. throw final will take place on Saturday evening. On Sunday, there will be several event finals.

The women will compete in the shot put trials and later, if they qualify, will compete in the finals.

If the men and women qualify for the finals, the men will compete in the 1 mile, 400m, 4×400 finals. The women will also compete in DMR – selection, 400m, 800m and 4x400m finals.

The Owls hope to participate in the IC4A/ECAC award ceremonies, which will conclude the three day event. This will give the Owls a boost as the NCAA championship approaches.

-Danielle Nelson

Track and Field teams head to New York CIty

The men’s and women’s track and field teams will continue their seasons at the NB Balance Collegiate Invitational in New York City on Friday and Saturday.

Coming off an impressive weekend at Penn State, in which several athletes achieved personal records, the Owls will look to fine-tune their techniques and maintain their focus in New York, the last meet before the Atlantic Ten Conference Championships, which kick off on February 16.

On Friday, the Owls kick off competition with standout sophomore thrower Margo Briton, participating in the shot put at 9:30 a.m. Briton is one of eleven Temple athletes who will partake in events Friday. Six of them are running the 400m dash, including junior sprinting star Ambrosia Iwugo on the women’s side at 11:50 a.m. and senior sprinter Damian Myers on the men’s side at 12:35 p.m. The Owls’ final event will occur at 12:50 p.m. as sophomore jumper Darryl McDuffie competes in the high jump.

Briton opens up for Temple again on Saturday morning at 8:30 a.m. with the weight throw, while the men’s 4x400m relay will be the closing act at 3:52 p.m. The four relayers are still relatively unaccustomed to running together, so this race will be critical in acting as a final test before the A-10 Championships.

Track & field ready to run at Penn State

The men’s and women’s track & field teams will go to Penn State this weekend, competing at the same location for the first time since Jan. 5 at the Rutgers Invitational.

Both the men’s and women’s sides will feature 10 runners in various events over the course of Friday and Saturday. On Friday, running events will commence at 4:45 p.m. while field events will start at 5:45 p.m., with the final event taking place at 9:30 p.m. On Saturday, the meet will run from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

The Owls have about three weeks until the Atlantic 10 Conference Championships get underway on February 16.

Mark McHugh

Track hires new assistant/cross country coach

Track & field coach Eric Mobley has hired Adam Bray, formerly of the University of Illinois and Maryland University, as his new assistant coach, a press release indicated Thursday.

Bray was at Illinois from 2009-12 as a volunteer assisting with the men’s and women’s cross country teams. He held the same position at Maryland the previous two years.

Bray graduated from Akron University in 2005, and was graduate assistant for the Zips for the 2005-06 season in which the team won cross country, indoor and outdoor track team titles in the Mid-American Conference.

Bray replaces former coach Matt Jelley, who resigned from Temple to take an assistant job at Maryland on Aug. 13. Jelley was an assistant under Mobley for track & field and coached men’s and women’s cross country during his five-year tenure at Temple.