SAVE THE AUSTIN COLLEGE DISTANCE TRACK/XC COACH AND PROGRAM
Raise your voice on behalf of people of color in sport!
Across the United States, colleges are cutting their running coaches and programs. Those cuts hit African-American athletes and students of color the hardest. In Sherman, TX, the Distance Track/XC program has been cut, and is not only the cheapest athletics program out of any offered at the college, but also the sole athletics program to ever have achieved a team and coach composition of 100 percent people of color (the 2015 men’s team). Every year, on average, the men’s and women’s divisions of the running program are made of 54 percent people of color, as verified throughout the program’s 6-year history. The coach of the team is also the one coach of color at Austin College to be leading a sport independently; he is the single coach of color the college has in a leadership position by himself.
WHO WE ARE
the most inexpensive athletics program with the highest annual percentage of men and women of color
the most inexpensive and cost-effective program;
the program with the highest annual percentage of people of color on both the men’s and women’s teams in its 6-year history (54 percent, collectively);
the program that is the sole program to be led independently by one of just three coaches of color on the entire Austin College coaching staff (all of them Hispanic—Austin College has no African-American coaches on updated rosters in 2019-2020);
the program that stands alone in ’Roo athletics history in having, at one point, achieved a composition of 100 percent student-athletes of color and coaching leadership of color (the men’s team in 2015 was all students of color, coached by the Hispanic coach);
the program that is the solitary Olympic sport of the three sports civil rights activist Russell Dinkins has identified (basketball, running, and football) as containing high percentages of people of color.
HOW YOU CAN HELP
Tell Austin College you support our coach and team because you value diversity and inclusivity, and sign our petition.
CALL, SEND LETTERS, EMAIL
President Steven O’Day’s emails, and his assistant’s email
Athletic Director David Norman’s email
Austin College’s mailing address: 900 N Grand Ave, Sherman, TX, 75090
Phone numbers for President Steven O’Day and Athletic Director David Norman
President Steven O’Day: (903) 813-3001
Athletic Director David Norman: (903) 813-2499
“[The] rhetoric [of colleges that cut their running coaches and programs] doesn’t match their actions. If [the institutions] really [are] committed to confronting racial injustice, they [will] start by redoubling their efforts to afford access to talented Black men and women [and people of color]. And that starts by reinstating [the sport]."